Dutch Schnell, goalie-racer here, and as you can tell by monitoring the photo to the left, Dutch Schnell was out in the sun waaaaay too long this week.
Can you blame Dutch? Dutch Schnell likes nice weather. Dutch Schnell has never made a secret of that. Dutch Schnell would put nice weather right up there with the Canucks missing the playoffs or waking up at 3:30 in the morning, realizing it’s 3:30 in the morning, and then going back to sleep. Dutch Schnell also likes to sleep.
If you’re wondering why Dutch Schnell is referring to himself in the third person, you must not have been a part of the festivities on Fan Appreciation Night at the Xcel Energy Center.
To recap: Dutch Schnell obliterated the competition in the final goalie race of the season during the second intermission. Because of Dutch’s accomplishment, one lucky fan in the lower level won an XM radio and the jersey off Dutch’s back (which Dutch later found in the mouth of a stray Doberman Pinscher).
Unfortunately, I don’t have video evidence to back up my win, but the photograph of Pin Guy and myself is all the evidence you need my friends.
| Could the guy in the background look any more annoyed about being next to Dutch? |
Winning two races in one year isn’t unprecedented, but it’s a little like reaching the 50-goal mark in the NHL. It’s nothing to sneeze at, and it allows one a free pass to talk or write in the third person.
But more important than that, our obviously inspired Wild boyz (remember, the “Z” gives us street cred), came out with their proverbial guns-a-blazin’ in the third period following my triumph. No one was hotter under the collar than the fiery-haired one, also known as Stephane Veilleux.
Veilleux scored a lovely breakaway goal, proceeded to go Million Dollar Baby on the hapless Radim Vrbata, then capped it by raising the roof for the delirious fans as he was escorted away.
Let’s not forget to call out Josh Harding, the southie, or as my summer softball team would call him, the Hook, who shut down the Wirtz Warriors for 60 full minutes to get his first career shutout.
Are you trying to tell me my goalie race win didn’t have something to do with all this?
I may have to break out some boring statistics for a minute, so bear with me. The Wild was 2-0-0 this season on nights when Dutch Schnell was the goalie-racing winner. Further, it was 1-0-0 on nights when Dutch gave puppy-hater Egg Olson a mild concussion. As a matter of fact, Minnesota was a perfect 4-0-0 on nights when there was a goalie race staged.
If we had just staged five more goalie races at the Xcel Energy Center this year, Saturday’s game against Jon Klemm and the Dallas Stars isn’t so meaningless anymore is it?
| They’re adorable and the fans love them, but will they inspire to Stephane Veilleux to go nuts? Probably not. |
Do we really need to see adorable little kids playing hockey and celebrating an empty net goal like it was an overtime game-winner in Game Seven by waving to their parents in the stands?
Is it extremely cute? Yes. Does it instill fear in opponents and rev up our Wild players enough to make them want to eat Manny Fernandez’ water bottle? No, not really.
It’s food for thought for next year, my friends. If you’d like to add your name to the list of seeing a goalie race during every intermission, TV timeout and replay booth delay, you can contact me here and I’ll add your name to the petition.
Although we said our tearful goodbyes on Tuesday, you aren’t rid of me just yet. I still have a season recap due out next week. Then, I’ll be lurking, checking in periodically to offer insight into the Entry Draft, the Wells Fargo Wild Road Tour, the Minnesota State Fair, and of course, my upcoming nuptials. If anything else strikes my fancy, I just might write about that too.
Until next week, Dutch Schnell is Dutch Schnell and Dutch Schnell…is a goalie racer.
Want to see what else Dutch has to say? Click here