Wolves Hockey Team lights up the ice

Wolves Hockey Team lights up the ice

Wolves Hockey Team lights up the ice

Wolves light up the ice at the Allstate Arena in a game against the San Antonio Rampage. It’s phenomenal hockey and sports excitement from start to finish

By Ray Hanania

The American League hockey team the Chicago Wolves trounced the San Antonio Rampage this past week 3 to 1 in a match at the AllState Arena that was filled with excitement and fast and furious slap shots.

The Wolves have a full schedule of games through April and a lot of home games you won’t want to miss.

I’ve heard about the Wolves in the past but for some reason never made it out to their games. I always saw hockey through the narrow lease of one professional team, the Blackhawks and the famous Stanley Cup. But in truth, some of those Wolves players can take on the best that the Blackhawks have to offer.

The Blackhawks are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League. They have won six Stanley Cup championships since their founding in 1926. The Wolves haven’t done badly either. The Chicago Wolves are a professional ice hockey team playing in the Central Division of the Western Conference of the American Hockey League.

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Flames light up the opening of the Wolves Hockey Games at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

Flames light up the opening of the Wolves Hockey Games at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

The Wolves play for the equivalent of the Stanley Cup, called the Calder Cup, which was previously the Turner Cup when it was the IHL. The Wolves won the Turner Cup twice (1998, 2000) in the IHL and the Calder Cup twice (2002, 2008). The Wolves qualified for all but five postseasons (2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2012–13, and 2015–16 seasons), appearing in six league championship finals (1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2008) in their 22-year history.

Stanley, Turner, Calder, who cares? It’s the excitement on the ice that is so much more battling than football and more exciting than baseball. I love watching the Cubs, but it can get pretty boring sometimes, although they have had a great run the past few years. And I will watch the Bears when they make it to the play-offs as they did this past week until they were cheated by the Philadelphia Eagles — no one should be able to call a time-out simply to throw the other team’s sync off as they did to Bear’s Cody Parkey. To me that’s cheating. Hockey, though, is more exciting and the players go one-to-one on a faced paced game not he ice and it’s amazing how they control the puck.

The Wolves play home games at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont and are owned by Chicago business owners Don Levin and Buddy Meyers. They are the minor league affiliate of the Vegas Golden Knights. Originally a member of the International Hockey League, the Wolves joined the AHL after the IHL folded in 2001.

The Allstate Arena is so much more appealing than the United Center where parking and driving is a hassle, and in a not-so-great area of the city.

So when my son finally encouraged me to take him to catch a Wolves game, my focus changed. The game from start to finish was nail-biting. The Wolves are phenomenal. Chicagoland should be proud that we have two great hockey teams.

From the moment they enter the stadium through a Wolve’s “mouth” mind a stream of fire bursts and fireworks inside the stadium, until the very last puck slams across the ice at supersonic speeds, the games are exciting. One of the best renditions of the National Anthem is belted out powerfully by radio journalist Wayne Messmer. No one sings the National Anthem better. And I bet at the Wolves games, anyone who takes a knee during the National Anthem will probably take it to the chops, too. The audience was signing along with Messmer as he carried the powerful patriotic song lyrics.

Listen, I’m not much of a sports enthusiast. My focus has always been politics. But I have never seen so much physical contact and talented maneuvering as I did at the Wolves Game.

You have to see their games. And just inc are it;’s all about the food for you, the food there is great, too.

Click here to get tickets for the games. Let’s support the Wolves. They are a great Chicagoland sports team. You won’t regret it.

Wolves hockey game at Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

Wolves hockey game at Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

 

Wolves hockey game at Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

Wolves hockey game at Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania

 

Wolves Hockey player #18 TJ Tynan from Orland Park on the ice at the Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania.

Wolves Hockey player #18 TJ Tynan from Orland Park on the ice at the Allstate Arena. Photo courtesy of Ray Hanania.

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award-winning columnist, author & former Chicago City Hall reporter (1977-1992). A veteran who served during the Vietnam War and the recipient of four SPJ Peter Lisagor Awards for column writing, Hanania writes weekly opinion columns on mainstream American & Chicagoland topics for the Southwest News-Herald, Des Plaines Valley News, the Regional News, The Reporter Newspapers, and Suburban Chicagoland.  

Hanania also writes about Middle East issues for the Arab News, and The Arab Daily News criticizing government policies in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

A critic of mainstream news media bias, Hanania advocates for peace & justice for Israel & Palestine, & the empowerment of Arabs in America. 

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

Click Here to LISTEN to Hanania's live radio show on 2nd Friday every month 7 AM CST. Click here to listen to Ray's Podcasts. 

His columns are archived here. Hanania was named "Best Ethnic American Columnist" by the New America Media in November 2007, and is the 2009 recipient of the SPJ National Sigma Delta Chi Award for column writing.

Email Ray Hanania at rghanania@gmail.com.

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