This is a big weekend for the Gladiators, so it's a shame that the refereeing ruined the game tonight. Below is the culprit, Ryan Sweeney. He didn't see some blatant things like Craig Kowalski getting clipped up high just before a goal was scored, but called ticky-tacky stuff instead. Jeff Pyle, saying he didn't care if he got fined, called the game "the biggest embarrassment in 10 years of coaching," and "a horseshit job." I'll agree with the horseshit job bit. Jeff is prone to hyperbole, so it's hard to tell if it was actually the worst in his career.
Jeff Campbell wipes his face, perhaps in frustration.
It was jersey giveaway night, and fans were lined up outside the arena for them. The attendance was over 10,000. That's twice in one day the arena seated 10,000, as there was a Georgia Force game in the afternoon.
The one below is hysterical. It's of Riley Emmerson, who only came off the IR today and skated for just half of warmup and not the game. He shot a puck through a partially opened door by accident and reacted with a funny face.
Speaking of faces, here's a bunch lined up on the bench. The nearest is Dan Turple, then Joe Grimaldi. Mahrle has the gape-mouth as usual, and you can see Stoesz further down too. And then to the far left, a girl sitting between the benches.
Guillaume Desbiens was assigned by Chicago to help out. Otherwise the Gladiators would have been short, since defensemen Jeff Mason and Jon Sitko are on IR. Mason may come off IR tomorrow though.
Dezy (his preferred spelling) was involved in a scrum, but there were no fights all night. I was surprised by this given that these teams don't like each other much. Plenty of hitting, but no fights. This is him being restrained.
Chad Denny tied the game with a top shelf shot, but Texas would go on to win 2-1. Here he gets pats on the head.
I don't have a good photo of Tomas Pospisil from tonight, but he was playing much more physically than normal. Having seen Thrashers Asst. GM Larry Simmons in the building, I wondered if Pospisil was playing for him. Pyle claims Pospisil has been better lately, and it wasn't unusual. I would maintain we hadn't seen it at home though.
And in the "picture's worth 1000 words" file, we have Dan Turple on the bench, bored.
Lots of guys nursing minor bumps and bruises after the game. Brad Schell is still icing his back, Lou Dickenson his ankle, and Andy Brandt his wrist.
No good photos of Mike Vigilante's black eye from Friday's game, but I can tell you it's a rainbow of colors. As far as how it happened, he got into something he would tell you he had no business being in. But he was trying to protect his goalie, which is an admirable thing. The joke in the training room tonight was that Vig's girlfriend gave him the black eye. This struck people funny, probably because he's so easy to get along with, and the joke kept getting repeated. To me, the funniest thing was when, knowing his soft spot for babies, I told him there was a baby in the trainer's room and he didn't even say anything back, he just turned and went in. He's drawn to them. "Other people's babies," he clarified when called out on it.