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2016 Calder Cup Championship signified the start of a new chapter for my family

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AHL: JUN 06 Calder Cup Finals - Game 3 - Hershey Bears at Lake Erie Monsters Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Fox Sports Ohio will be airing the 2016 Calder Cup Championship game on Sunday May 3rd at 7pm est and Monsday, May 4th at 3pm est. Re-live the magic of the Lake Erie (now Cleveland) Monsters historical run coming to a positive end when they won the Calder Cup on June 11th, 2016.

For me, the night the Monsters won the Calder Cup was full of magic. Things I never thought would happen in Cleveland or even my own life somehow managed to come true. This was the first professional game my dad and I were ever able to attend together. It was the first time he was healthy enough to sit surrounded by thousands of people without fear of getting sick and ending up in the hospital. To my surprise, my dad made it to the end of the game without feeling sick or weak in a way which would require him to leave the arena before the game was over. We sat in the section behind the net where Oliver Bjorkstrand scored the game winning goal. The moment the puck went into the net, our section jumped up and roared in excitement. Shortly after, the rest of the arena was hit with the realization that Cleveland had just taken home the Calder Cup.

Then the tears began to flow and I could barely breathe between sobs of excitement. Cleveland FINALLY won a championship and I got to share it with my dad, a die-hard Cleveland sports fan and a two- time stage 4 Melanoma cancer survivor. So many times in my life I thought my dad would never live to see Cleveland win a championship or even get to a Championship game again. My whole life I prepared to experience important moments like this one without my dad because most of my life was spent living in fear that he would die young.

The Monsters winning the 2016 Calder Cup Championship signified the start of a new chapter in my family’s life. We turned the page on fear of losing each other and began to plan ahead together. The “ifs” became “whens” and the “maybes” became “yes”. Cleveland winning the Calder Cup in 2016 reminded us that miracles and magic exist in the world. Anything can happen. Anything will happen. We embrace the magic more now than I think we ever did in the past.

It was also the start of a new chapter for me. At the end of Calder Cup Championship celebration, I looked at my mom and said “It’s time”. She smiled with a sense of pride knowing that I was ready to take the next step in my career. On that day, I ended my chapter as a fan and began down the path of beat reporter covering the Cleveland Monsters.


Please use this post as a place to discuss the game being aired tonight. Also, feel free to share with me what it was like to watch the Lake Erie Monsters bring home a professional Championship to the great city of Clevelad.