Because August is so intolerable for hockey fans such as ourselves, we at the Chronicle spend most of this month indoors with the AC cranked up high enough that we can pretend it's October already. To help pass away the time, here's a list of first-half dates to look forward to once this vile month is behind us.
September 8- EA Sports NHL 2010 is released. No word yet as to whether or not Patty Kane will lose his place on the cover after his run in with the cabbie. New "Be a GM" mode allows you to hold press conferences to tell your season ticket holders that the team is "very close," and give Falconer the evil eye as he reminds you that he thinks you should trade Kovy. Details here.
September 14- Thrashers prospects vs. Preds prospects at the Ice Forum. Tickets here. Hopefully this will be a chance to see Evander Kane and Jeremy Morin take on Colin Wilson, but the rosters haven't been finalized yet. Either way, it's our first chance to see some hockey action.
September 21- Philips Arena doors open for the first preseason game of 09-10. Big Shooter will probably make his annual vow to save himself for the regular season, followed by his annual cave-in when we mention Wetzel-dogs and Beers Around the World.
October 3- Home opener! John "Somebody Slap Me" Anderson tries out his new roster as they slap around the Bolts in game 1 of 82.
October 22- Razor's predicted date for Kovy's 300th career NHL goal. He usually starts the season out a little slow, so I'm saying that his third of the year will come in the second home game, against his buddy Ovie.
November 21- Stanley Cup Champion Penguins visit Atlanta. Look for Kovy to put the biscuit in the basket at least twice to show Crosby and Malkin who's still the boss. (Hint- it's not Tony Danza.)