October 21, 2010
Like other NHL teams, the Washington Capitals host a "Mites on Ice" youth hockey mini-game during the between-periods intermission of home games.
On Tuesday night, the Reston (Va.) Raiders were selected to participate in an intra-squad mites game; and in an arena that's seen its share of boisterous goal celebrations from the likes of Alex Ovechkin(notes), the Raiders (ages 8 years old and younger) unleashed a unique celebration of their own after each score -- dropping to the ice and, to the delight of the crowd, making snow angels.
Why snow angels? Turns out the celebration stemmed from a slight misunderstanding between the players and Capitals promotions staff before the "Mites on Ice" game, according to Raiders coach Joshua Potter.
The Caps officials were pumping up the young players, talking about how big goal celebrations are encouraged in the between-periods amusement. "They were giving examples of what they could do to celebrate, and one of them said, 'You know, nobody has ever done a snow angel before. I'd love to see a snow angel. If anybody scores and does a snow angel, you'll get the game puck,'" recalled Potter.
"I think they misunderstood and they thought if anybody does a snow angel they get a game puck, not just the scorer," he said. "If you notice, a couple of players from the other team are doing it too."
The video above was actually the second goal scored in the game; here are both goals (scored by the same player, Gabe Dombrowski):
The fans loved it, the players had a blast and the story had a happy ending: Despite his players having misunderstood the whole "game puck" offer, Potter said the Capitals staff went to the team dressing room and presented each Raider with his own official game-night puck to commemorate the event.
Obviously, the angels were on their side. "Maybe the 'snow angel' will be the next big thing . . . maybe even bigger than the 'hot stick,'" said Potter, citing Ovechkin's most famous celebration.
Thanks to reader Dan Pollock for the video. Visit DanPollock.com.
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