Typically, July is a very boring sports month – all around. The NHL & NBA have finished their finals, it’s the middle of the MLB season, NFL & college sports haven’t started …
However, living across the country from your favorite baseball team makes any time they’re in town fairly exciting (especially if you, like me, don’t have the MLB package). I love being able to see the Yankees in HD and I’m lucky enough that they’re on ESPN and Fox fairly often, but when they’re in Anaheim (as they were this weekend), it’s great to see them in person. Granted, they often lose, since Anaheim is the only team with a winning record against the Yankees in the last 13 or so years, but it’s still good to see them play. In their first two games this weekend, the Yankees scored 14 runs against the Angels. Very good, actually… except for the fact that the Angels scored that many on Saturday alone and 24 on Friday and Saturday. Today’s game was a lot closer though the Angels still won. The Yankees had been one of the hottest teams in baseball before meeting up with the Angels, so hopefully they’ll get back to that after the All-Star break.
This weekend was also the LA Kings’ development camp for their young players who haven’t made it into the NHL yet. It’s always good to see the players who’ve been chosen. I don’t follow that much minor league hockey, so I never know if I agree or disagree with the rankings before the draft or have much of an opinion on how various teams did in the draft. The development camp puts it into perspective a bit, since you can see the players in person and judge them for yourself.
It was nice to see the large turnout today at the development camp in El Segundo. Everyone says it was about as crowded Friday and Saturday, too. Since Friday was during a work day and Friday and Saturday had great weather and (as always in southern California) plenty of options for fans to spend their time, it’s great to see how many of them chose to spend time inside to get a glimpse of the Kings’ future. Hockey has the shortest off season, but it can still seem to drag at times. Development camp is definitely a way to get a good hockey fix in person.
Hockey Fest in the end of August at LA Live is really the next major event for hockey fans in southern California. The more I hear about Hockey Fest, the more interesting it sounds. I think it’s something all southern California hockey fans will be able to enjoy (yes, even the Ducks fans). Of course, southern CA hockey fans who haven’t visited the Science of Hockey exhibit at the Discovery Science Center should check that out to kill the time in the off season.
To read more of my thoughts on the NHL and other sports, check out Press Box Perspective.