Blogging the Convention: On the floor
The Fourth annual Blackhawks Convention at the Hilton Chicago went into high gear Saturday morning with players scattering throughout, as though it was time for instrasquad games during training camp. At the 'Join The Rush' session, Duncan Keith barely had taken his seat when he was serenaded with "Happy Birthday to You." Indeed, it was the star defenseman's 28th. Moderator Steve Konroyd promptly noted it was his and wife Juli's wedding anniversary.
Later, Keith participated in a "LIfe on the Road" panel with Bryan Bickell, Patrick Sharp and Brent Seabrook. The ovation was enormous and Dan Roan of WGN9 thanked all his viewers, ahem. Sharp is on record as saying Seabrook is a great friend, but a difficult roommate because of his habits and superstitions. Seabrook chimed in by saying that when Sharp, one of Chicago's 50 most beautiful people, is finished loading his luggage for the road, there isn't much room for anybody else. That's why, Seabrook quipped, he can't even bring a toothbrush along. Keith bemoaned his routine of bringing 3 or 4 suits on extended trips, then wearing only one and wondering why he brought the others. Bickell said Seabrook never has that problem because Seabrook wears the same suit all the time, regardless of how long the trip is. The Blackhawks have one excursion of nine straight away games this winter. That will be interesting.
Goalies can seem normal, even though they endure abnormal pressure in what might be the most difficult position in pro sports. Glenn Hall, Tony Esposito and Corey Crawford were insightful during a 'Between The Pipes" panel. Mark Giangreco, popular sportscaster for ABC-7 and a big hockey fan, reminded Hall that he was involved in one of the most famous photographs in the sport's history--Bobby Orr, airborne, scoring the clinching goal in the Boston Bruins' Stanley Cup victory of 1970. Hall was tending goal for Scotty Bowman's St. Louis Blues, an expansion team. Hall told a large audience that he later saw Orr and informed him, "Bobby, I had showered before you landed.'"