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Alumni Update – Spring 2019

Things That Were and Never Will be Again

By John Doolan

I asked this question on a sister FB page that includes former trainers and equipment managers.  The responses were great memories of “Things that were and never will be again.”  Here are some of the gems.

Prior to the development of the various blade leveling devises, most used a coin to see if we were somewhat in level.

For many players lining their shin and elbow pads with cotton was a way to eliminate the roughness of the materials used in the equipment.

Besides using a torch to curve wooden sticks, many players let them soak in the hot hydrocollator to soften the wood and then worked on their curve.

At one time, sweaters did not come with tie downs, various ways to improvise a tie down was a skate lace and a coin or sewing garter belt straps to the uniform.

Prior to the development of shot blockers, many defensemen wore ankle guards for some protection.

Staffs have grown over the years, at one time there was single coach system and one trainer and one equipment manager. With third for truck and visitors.

The advancement in skate technology and the molded boot, the Lange skate may have had an impact on today’s boot. 

With technology on the nutritional side there are all sorts of sport drinks utilized by today’s player.  In the 70’s, the dressing room refreshments were water, soda and sliced oranges served in an ice towel.

Again, with the regulations on equipment, the days of sewing shoulder caps to a player’s suspenders are long gone.

It was not unusual to have players drinking coffee and having a smoke in between periods.

When it came to travel, a charter was on a prop plane.  Otherwise, it was commercial –  checking all equipment curb side, tipping the Sky Caps and doing all the boarding passes. If lucky, moving up to first class.  We did advance however and got to a point where we could take the Equipment van to the commercial flight.  Then loading it on the plane and being escorted up the steps to get directly on board. 

Many of the Trainers did their own suturing.  If a player got cut and there was not a doctor on site, the trainer would do the job.

Goalie pads were leather and stuffed with deer hair, they would gain maybe 15 pounds during a game.  Also, they had toe straps instead of toe bridges.

Performance wear has come a long way, back in the 60-70’s, there was one choice.  They were called union suits and the player took a pair of scissors to customize his pair. 

When it came to making Gatorade, a broken goalie stick was the tool of choice for stirring.

At one time, goalie skates were 3-piece set-up.  The boot, cowling and blade.

Hope you enjoyed this stroll down memory lane as the Alumni looks forward to seeing everyone in June!

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