The Staples Center, most notably the home of the Los Angeles Lakers, was transformed into an indoor ice rink for another team that calls the Staples Center home ― the LA Kings. The Los Angeles Kings were facing their neighbors from the north ― the Edmonton Oilers last Thursday.
For many of the GPSS students in attendance this was their first hockey game, as well as their first visit to the iconic Staples Center. To the students unfamiliar with was game, the best way to describe was “it’s just like soccer, but with less people and on the ice”. This may be a good comparison, except for the fact that fighting between members of opposite teams is anticipated as well as cheered on by fellow spectators. While Thursday nights’ game may have had few fights ― only one in the middle of the third period ― it certainly had more goals, three in fact for the Oilers.
The first of which being by a former King player himself, Ryan Smyth. At the end of last season, Smyth requested to be traded from the Kings and landed himself with Canada’s Oilers. This no doubt explained the booing that he incurred upon entering the rink and the yells from former fans after he shot the Oiler’s first goal. But while the game may have been a loss for the Kings, it did not feel that way for the GPSSers in attendance.
During the game intermission, the King’s mascot Bailey ran around and got cheers from the crowd, USC graduate students had an excellent venue to sit back and let themselves be entertained on a Thursday night.
By Martha Pastuszka