AMA Travel Diaries: Game 2 was electric and set the tone for an amazing last night in Vegas
By baggedmilk6 months ago
It was a couple of long days in Vegas before we finally got to game day, but once we got there, the three of us couldn’t contain our excitement. Rested, hydrated, and excited, Tyler, Jay, and I knocked out some work as quickly as we could before popping on our jerseys and hitting the strip.
Once we got outside, I started noticing Edmonton jerseys everywhere. On Wednesday, there were plenty of us at the game, but based on the early observations, my guess is that there was easily twice the amount. It felt like every few hundred feet or so, we saw someone in our colours and it had me feeling excited about what was to come. Game 2 on a Saturday night in Vegas? The opportunity for a fantastic day was right in front of us. And with a pre-game meal from Taco Bell Cantina setting the foundation for our day, victory felt inevitable.
There’s just something about playoff hockey while wearing shorts that’s extra special, ya know? So to see that many people in blue and orange was remarkable. It’s hard to describe how much fun it is to see so many of us celebrating and cheering the boys on behind enemy lines. If I was to estimate how many of us were there, I’d say that it was about 15% of the rink was wearing orange and blue. Then again, I will readily admit that I had a few cocktails by the time the game started so my math could be off a bit.
Regardless of my poor counting skills, the important point is that there were a lot of Edmonton fans in town for Game 2 and the pre-game vibes were immaculate. The plaza outside of T-Mobile Arena was absolutely buzzing with energy, and I was having fun just looking around and soaking it all in. There were chants, we were high-fiving, and we were living our best lives in anticipation of a much better result than what we got on Wednesday night.
Inside the rink, the vibes were just as good as they were outside. From the moment we walked into T-Mobile Arena, we did our usual lap of the concourse and I don’t know that I’ve ever high fived that many people in my life. Not only was that game a massive one for the boys as they looked to even up the series, but you could tell that the fans in attendance were fired up and ready to go. Everyone was in a party mood, and if the road team could do their thing, then all of us that were down there were in line for a fantastic night.
With the pre-game smoke still clearing and the music cranked up to 1000, Edmonton quieted the hometown crowd almost immediately with a flurry of offence that got started, where else, on the power play. As far as starts go, this was a beauty by Edmonton and I was hopeful that they’d find a way to keep themselves in the lead rather than coughing it up almost immediately as they did on Wednesday night in Game 3. And much to our drunken delight, the boys not only found a way to keep their lead but they extended it with four goals by the time the first period was over. Just like that, the game was basically over even though there was plenty of time left.
Win locked in and the series tied at one, Edmonton fans spilled out into the strip and we were not at all shy about sharing our excitement. If I thought I had high-fived a bunch of people on the concourse before the game, that number paled in comparison to what happened outside. Almost anywhere I looked offered the opportunity to either high five someone, join in a chant, or pop into a group photo like that one above. For all of us that were lucky enough to make our way down for the games, this moment of celebration was exactly what we needed and set a high bar for what was an incredible night to follow.
Pockets flush with cash from the winning bets we put down before the game, Tyler, Jay, and I jumped in an Uber and made our way to Fremont Street. If you had been listening to the Real Life podcasts that we recorded or even on Oilersnation Everyday, we pledged to end our night in old Vegas if the boys came through with a win, and that’s exactly what we did. If you’ve never been down there before, Fremont Street is basically a portal into another universe and I’d argue that there’s no better atmosphere that you can find for free.
As is the case every time we head to Fremont Street after a win, we locked into the cover band that was cranking out jams and danced like idiots until the show was over. The drinks were flowing, our singing was horrendous, and we couldn’t have been happier about the way the night was playing out. After the band wrapped up its set, we wandered into the casino for one last dance with the tables because we felt like our roll was sure to continue. Did I expect to double my money again playing Blackjack, a game I’ve never once played outside of a handful of times on my phone? No, I did not. But that’s the beauty of Las Vegas after a huge Edmonton win. Sometimes when you’re flying high it’s impossible to get pulled down, and I’d say that’s exactly what happened for the three of us on our last night in Sin City.
What a win, what a night, what a trip.
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