Adirondeck Phantoms @ Bridgeport Soundtigers

Since the NHL is in a lockout and no end in sight I decided to take the ferry ride across to Bridgeport to check out an AHL game. The Soundtigers are the AHL affiliates of the New York Islander and play in Webster Bank Arena formely known as "Arena at Harbor Yard". Harbor Yard is the name of the minor league baseball stadium that is adjacent to the arena. Harbor Yard is the home of the Atlantic Leagues Bridgeport Bluefish.

                                                   The view from our seats standing up

Getting there for me is pretty easy for me. I take the ferry from Port Jefferson to Bridgeport, the trip takes about 1 hr and 15 minutes at a cost $26 round trip. Its a short 10 min walk to the arena from the ferry terminal. If I decided to take the drive it would probably take about 2 hrs. Then I have to deal with the bridges and all the traffic that goes along with the drive. The ferry ride is more relaxing. Last nights ferry ride was abit rough due to the weather. It was like getting an amusement park ride for the price of a ferry ride.
I also learned yesterday that a package deal can be purchased from the Ferry company that includes the roundtrip ferry and tickets to the game for $30. Which turns out to be a great deal. For me it costs the $26 for the ferry and $32 for the game ticket. So, next time I go I'm will be purchasing the package.
Webster Bank Arena opened in 2001, which is the same year the Soundtigers played there first season. The Arena hold 8,525 for hockey and can hold up to 10,000 for concerts.
The Soundtigers played the AHL affiliates of the Philadelphia Flyers, who happen to be my favorite team. The attendance was pretty poor for the game. According to the AHL website there was just 3,945 in attendance. I talked to the usher in my section and he said that the team probably averages around 4,000 per game. He also said that the attendance goes up when the Connecticut Whale is in town. The Whale are the NY Rangers affiliate. They play in Hartford which is approx. a 1 hr drive to the northeast. So, its a natural riverly.
Our tickets where 3 rows behind the Phantoms penalty box and 5 rows from the boards. With the attendance being so low. We moved to the front row in the section next to us.

Before the game there was a moment of silence and a video tribute for the victims of the Tragic Sandy Hook School Shooting. Newtown is just a 30 minute drive to the north. Each of the Soundtigers wore jerseys with the childrens last names on them in place of there own. I believe I heard that they will wear those jerseys for the rest of the month and then present them to each familys. The Phantoms had stickers on the back of there helmet as a tribute and on the scoreboard through out the game, the victims names where posted on the scoreboard

                                                 The Tribute on the Phantoms Helmets
The game was pretty exciting for me the Phantoms jumped out to a 3-0 lead and there where 2 fights in the first period. The Phantoms won the game 3-2 with the Soundtigers making it interesting.
The Phantoms had I believe 7 NHLers play in the game the Soundtigers had 8.  Some of the notables are Sean Couturier, Matt Ford, Braydon Schenn and Zac Rinaldo for the Phantoms and the Soundtigers had Nino Neiderreiter, David Ullstrom and Anders Nilsson. All of which played in the NHL last season.
I took over 100 photo's and here are some.
   Ty Wishart before the game. Notice he does not have shoes or skates on. It must be a hockey thing?

                                                            Our view of the penalty box

I attempted to catch this puck after it came over the glass during the game. As you can see i got the puck along with a bruised and swollen hand and black and blue thumb.

I had no intentions of doing any graphing. But, I ran into a few of the guys that I graph with at the Islanders games and they told me where and when to go if I wanted to try graphing Bridgeport. So, I may give it a try.

I will definitely be going to atleast one more Soundtigers game this season. I think there are atleast 3 or 4 other AHL teams in driving distance from me. I may take a drive.

Thanks for Reading and Check Back Soon!
Merry X-Mas and have Safe and  Happy New Year!