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An International Fans Guide To: Game Day

As the season goes along, our international Coyotes writer will update us on her guide to being an abroad hockey fan.

NHL: Arizona Coyotes at Los Angeles Kings Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

It’s an Arizona Coyotes game day. Yay! Time to order some pizza and settle down in front of the television, right?

Well… not quite.

It’s an Arizona Coyotes game day, but according to the calendar, it’s not.

Not yet, anyway.

By the time the puck drops in game one in Arizona, it will be about three hours into the 6th. By which point all the shops are closed, I’m half asleep, and flatmates get pretty annoyed if you wake them up shouting over a bad call or celebrating a goal.

My Coyotes ‘game days’ start at about 17:00, when I get back from classes or from work. I eat a quick dinner, set all my alarms, and settle down for a few hours sleep. My first alarm will go off about 2 am, I’ll make myself a flask of coffee (or tea) and get my snacks sorted, typically sweet and salty popcorn.

Plus. what hockey fan doesn’t have their routines and what definitely aren’t superstitions, it’s just tradition, right?. Mine are all pretty simple - wearing my Ekman-Larsson jersey, snuggling up under my lucky blanket and getting my teddy ready to muffle any expletives - of which there are frequently many, either of joy or anguish. Then all I have to do is settle down somewhere comfortable, pull up whatever streaming service I’m using, and wait for puck drop.

And hope I don’t fall asleep. During game play I can usually stay awake, even if the neutral zone trap is sometimes my enemy. There’s nothing like the shouts of the broadcast team, the clang of a puck off the post and goal horns to startle you out of a half doze. Intermissions are my kryptonite, however, as twenty minutes of near silence isn’t the best method of staying awake at 5am, as anyone who’ve seen me fall asleep before the third period can attest.

Once the game is finished - or, frequently, at some point during the third period - I fall asleep, at about 5:30am…

… ready to get up at 7:30am for classes.