Colorado Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barrie, who will play in the 2016 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game against the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday at Coors Field in Denver (8 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, TVA Sports), is keeping a diary of his experiences this weekend. This is his second installment, which focuses on the Avalanche practice Friday morning under sunny skies and temperatures in the high 50s.
To practice on the ice was awesome. It was beautiful out there and it was a lot of fun and a cool experience. Being able to have an NHL practice and look up and see blue skies and everything was pretty amazing.
Skating in a big stadium like that was a completely different experience. It was absolutely gorgeous out there today and I enjoyed it a lot. This game is just a really good chance to showcase what Colorado has to offer. A lot of people expected it to be snowing here, but it's really a beautiful place and we're fortunate to get to play here. It was such a cool experience to breathe the fresh air when you're skating. The glare was pretty good and you're squinting pretty good at the beginning, but it was a lot of fun.
It was our final practice before the game Saturday and I didn't really know what to expect. I think all the guys were blown away. There is nothing but excitement. I'm sure it will be a great game and a lot of fun and we'll enjoy watching the Alumni Game tonight, and then it's all business. We have to put the distractions aside and play our game. There are many family and friends in town, and a lot going on, but at the end of day we're hockey players. Once we get out there for the game, and start warming up for the game and doing our thing, it will be business as usual.
I think it's going to be great for the fans. We had a little reception up in Coors Field yesterday and I was kind of wondering about the sightlines, but they seem great. With weather like this, what more can you ask for? It will be great for fans to come have a baseball experience at a hockey game. Grab a dog, grab a beer and enjoy it.