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Dutch Schnell: New Race Format

by Staff Writer / Minnesota Wild

Dutch Schnell, goalie-racer here, and as you can tell by taking a glimpse at the photo to the left, I’ve got my race face on…again.

I don’t have the time or wherewithal to mess around today State of Hockey legion. There will be zero dilly-dallying, pussyfooting, meandering, and/or swanning around. Not only is my time at a premium, I’m running short on patience as well. That’s just how I roll the day before a big race.

It’s funny, but the day of a race, I’m a joy to be around. Go figure.

Judging by the fact that you’re here on Wild.com while your blank timesheets sit idle on your desk, I speculate that you also are short on time to waste.

If I had ample time at my disposal, I’d be gushing about something bizarre I saw at last night’s Minnesota Wild triumph over the cantankerous Vancouver Canucks. It occurred in the second period with the Wild down by one goal. Rory Fitzpatrick, who plays defense for Vancouver, hauled down Brian Rolston on a breakaway. As a result, Rolston was awarded a penalty shot, when what to my wondering eyes should appear? Number 12 crosses the blue line, takes a peek at Roberto Luongo and winds up! “Who does that

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 Chuckie Sullivan (left) and his buddy, Will, enjoy messing around with "smaht kids."
on a penalty shot?” I shrieked as I started poking myself in the eye.

I’ll tell you who. Brian Rolston. He’ll do it, and he won’t care what you think. He’ll blast that puck inside the post, and quote Boston Southie Chuckie Sullivan in a Hah-vahd bah, “How you like me now?”

I noticed a few things an instant after Rolston put that shot past Luongo, and I realized I wasn’t the only soul in the building trying to figure out what happened. First, Luongo looked back at Rolston as if to say, “What was that?”

Second, I scoped the Wild bench, which was full of players jumping around like little Egg Olson after being told that owning puppies has been outlawed in Minnesota. Their mouths were agape. Their arms were raised to the heavens or clutching the nearest guy next to them. They were beside themselves with mirth.

Then, I saw Rolston, calmly gliding back to the bench with his left arm extended and a smirk on his face. It became official at that moment – Rolston has now moved ahead of Matt Leinart on the list of “coolest dudes out there.” The Wild winger now ranks eighth on the list, behind only Snoop Dogg, Michael Jordan, George Clooney, Tom Brady, Mick Jagger, Robert DeNiro and, of course, Wild media relations guru, Aaron Sickman.

At this point, Rolston could call Todd White his “dawg,” and get away with it. He’s reached that plateau, and a lonely place it is.

I completely went off on a tangent there, and now it looks like I have a borderline man-crush on Rolston. My apologies.

What I wanted to delve into is tomorrow night’s long-awaited first intermission Great Goalie Race presented by SuperAmerica.

Over the summer, the Goalie Racing Board of Governors approved new rules for the 2006-2007 Goalie Racing season. The board also passed a movement to add an expansion goalie racer…more on him in a

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 Brian Rolston has cracked the short list of cool dudes with his penalty shot slapper.
minute.

If there’s anything you know about me after this past year and a half together, it’s that I’m nothing if not independent. I work alone.

I don’t want help writing my column, and I certainly don’t need help with my goalie-racing career. But due to a unanimous ruling, the GRBG mandated that goalie races would heretofore feature teams of two. One racer skates one lap around the rink, then hands his goalie stick to his partner for the second lap. The usual physicality is encouraged and expected.

I’m not thrilled with the idea of waiting for another racer to hand me a stick, but I’ll do what I must. If there’s a bright side, it’s that I will be skating the anchor leg with the big haired, and tough-as-Boogaard, Ugly Roguski as my partner.

At least I didn’t get stuck with perennial loser Legs Lukenen, or candy-hater, Egg Olson for this race. I also avoided having to team up with the newest goalie racer in the League, “Easy” Ed Finkbine of Fargo, North Dakota. Apparently Finkbine doubles as a hockey commentator, proving that I’m not the only goalie-racer with an interest outside of racing.

I enjoy writing, bumper cars and watching the Mighty UMD Bulldogs.

The 06-07 Racing Season will be conducted on a points system, meaning each member of the winning team gets three points. The second place team gets two, and I don’t think I need to go on for you Mensas. You know your arithmetic.

I was hoping the champion would win a gas card or something, but here in Minnesota, it’s all about the fans. The beneficiaries of whomever comes out on top will be sitting in the crowd.

That’s just fine by me, because…

…I am Dutch Schnell, and I…am a goalie racer.

Click here to email Dutch.

Click here to read past drivel...er...columns by Dutch.

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