Nothing like playoff hockey in North Texas in the spring.
Long, spirited series. Mysterious injuries. Clutch goaltending. Late nights melting into early mornings watching multiple-overtime classics.
And, of course, driving to North Richland Hills.
Because if you want post-season ice hockey this year, you best become a bandwagon fan of the Texas Brahmas.
Don't tell me you're still holding out hope for your Dallas Stars? Already on life support, they flat-lined last night with a 1-0 shootout loss that leaves them 0-4-1 in their last five games and in 12th place - five points out of 8th - with eight games remaining.
In news that will surely rock Daryl Reaugh's security and sanity, Saturday night at 7 I'll be in NYTEX Sports Centre alongside 105.3 The Fan's Pete Stein to call Game 1 of the Central Hockey League's Southern Conference semifinal series between your Brahmas and the reviled Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. The telecast - on Time Warner Cable's Metro Sports channel 185 - can be seen tape-delayed Sunday at noon and 7 p.m., Monday at 3 p.m. and Tuesday at 8 a.m. and 8:30 p.m.
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Set your TiVos accordingly. To make fun of me. And to watch what should be some pretty good hockey.
Reincarnated from those Fort Worth Brahmas teams earlier this decade, the Texas Brahmas won the CHL's Southern Conference this season. They've got balanced scoring, the league's second-best defense and a 26-5-1 record in their barn that the Stars would kill for.
I think I can confidently say that if Dallas hoists a championship trophy spring, it will be the Brahmas.