This is the day that die hard Springfield hockey fans wait all summer for.
Tonight, the Springfield Falcons and Connecticut Whale will skate in a pre-season game at the MassMutual Center in Springfield. Face off is scheduled for 7PM.
Granted, this being the first pre-season game, there still remains a question as to if, or how many of the men in uniform tonight will be a part of this year's edition of the Falcons. The early training camp roster is an assemblage of players from both ends of the hockey spectrum and everywhere in between.
Competition for the few available roster spots is fierce, as you would expect. I still remember the disappointment on the faces of a few of the players from last season who didn't make it.
Tonight, it's not about who won't make it, but about the opportunity presented to those who will. Also different this year, for players that the parent Blue Jackets may have interest in, is a more structured environment with the addition of the Chicago Express as an alternative for those who aren't quite ready for a season in the AHL.
Coach Rob Riley plans on using 11 forwards and 7 defensemen for the game tonight.
Camp continues this morning with a 10AM skate at the MMC.