Remember my Todd McLellan signed Sharks photo from a couple of weeks ago? If not... here's a link to my other Shark Hunting experience.
Well today the San Jose Sharks training camp opened up and I was able to collect a bunch of autographs. Here's a before and after shot of my Sharks photo:
At first it looks like a bunch of scribbles in silver Sharpie... but upon closer inspection you'll notice I picked up several autographs of key players, including Sharks legend and developmental coach, Mike Ricci and newly acquired Brent Burns, Michal Handzus, and Martin Havlat. Other players who will also be there on the opening night roster are Torrey Mitchell, Frazer McLaren, and Thomas Greiss.
The rest are younger prospects or other players I don't know too much about. In fact, I spent about 45 minutes trying to figure out who was who on the photo... and I still can't identify one of the signatures - the one written across the JOSE right about the word SHARKS. If anyone has a clue... please let me know.
Now, if you're wondering where some of the bigger names are... well, I decided to get them on 8x10's that will hopefully one day grace my office walls.
I missed out on a few of the bigger names... for one reason or another.
As I drove up, Antero Niittymaki was leaving. One of the guys told me he left early since he's injured and didn't participate in the practice. Patrick Marleau also slipped my grasp... as he quietly left a side door while one of the other players was signing for us. Patty has always been one of the fan favorites, because he's very personable and a willing signer... so I'm sure I'll be able to get his "current" signature one of these days. I say current, because I met him in person years ago in the late 90's... when he was fairly new to the Sharks.
The only other guys I wanted, but didn't get were Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Antti Niemi. One of the employees told us that Pickles was feeling under the weather and I'm not too sure about Niemi. One of these days I'd like to get Niemi to sign an 8x10 that I have of him... but for now, I'll have to survive with my autographed puck from a couple of weeks ago.
I'm looking forward to going out there again sometime soon. There were about thirty other autograph seekers today, and I'm assuming the numbers will only increase as the season opener draws nearer. But it was totally worth it to have the chance to say "hello" and meet the players on my hometown hockey team.
Well... I'm going to retire for the evening, because believe it or not, autograph seeking is actually a lot of work. We spent over four hours standing in the sun, but it was worth every minute.
Oh... and one more thing... a huge thanks to my buddy Mike for providing me with all of the photos in exchange for a silver Sharpie and a strawberry-something from Jamba Juice. Domo arigato Mike!
Question of the day...
Are you a hockey fan? If so... which team(s) do you cheer for?
Have a great weekend everyone...
I'm off to go watch Star Wars: Episode 1 on Blu-ray, which arrived in the mail today. Sayonara!