Notebook - Dec. 10
Old school: Nine years after 74,544 fans packed Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, MI for the largest outdoor game on record, the University of Michigan is set to shatter that attendance record on Saturday afternoon with 109,901 people expected to brave the cold for the rematch. The man who scored two goals and added an assist in the Oct. 6, 2001 game, former Wolverine Michael Cammalleri shared some of his most memorable moments at The Big House.
“The first one that comes to mind was actually on my recruiting visit,” recalled Cammalleri. “I was on the field before the home opener with some of the football coaches and they actually let me catch a couple of punts at the end of the warmups in front of 110,000 people or so and that was pretty cool. That memory is the one that sticks out for me.
|Highlights from the previous Habs-Wings matchup
“Another memory is we used to run stairs in the stadium,” remembered Cammalleri with a laugh. “Red [Berenson] would be sitting up there just watching us run stairs in the stadium. We had to touch every stair in the stadium. It would take about 15 minutes and maybe 60 percent of the group would vomit at the end of that. Those were memorable moments in that stadium to say the least.”
Lucky charms: After seeing former Redmen Mike Babcock put his lucky McGill University tie on the map during his run to the 2008 Stanley Cup, Mathieu Darche looked into adding one of the famous cravats to his own collection this summer. Unfortunately, the 2000 McGill Management grad wasn’t the only proud alum planning on putting his school ties on display in the NHL.
“It’s funny because this year when I spoke to [McGill Sports Information Officer] Earl Zukerman I told him I had to go by the McGill bookstore to buy a tie since it seems like everyone in the league has one of those lucky ties,” said Darche with a laugh. “Guy [Boucher] has one, Marty [Raymond] has one, Mike [Babcock] has one but they were sold out the last time I looked. Hopefully Mike’s isn’t too lucky tonight.”
Moving day: No stranger to going up against some of the best players in the league night in and night out, Roman Hamrlik knows he’s in for some particularly heavy lifting against the Red Wings on Friday night.
“It’s important to let Carey see the first shot and clear away any rebounds. Especially now these days, you can’t really push guys in front of the net as much and Tomas Holmstrom is one of the best in the league at what he does,” explained the 36-year-old Habs blue-liner. “You try to move him, but he’s so strong that you just try to take his stick to keep him from knocking down those second chances. He’s really good in front of the net so you just have to try to get position on him, block him out and push him outside.”
Back in the mix: Still day-to-day with a lower body injury, Scott Gomez will be taking in Friday’s tilt from the press box for the first time this season. With Gomez out, Dustin Boyd will be making his return to the Habs’ lineup for the first time in 14 games, joined by P.K. Subban, who will be back beside Alexandre Picard on the Canadiens’ blue-line against the Wings.
Shauna Denis is a writer for canadiens.com.
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