The New York Islanders are looking for members to add to their hype team. Here’s my free advice to help bring the fans to their feet.
Once every kid, or sometimes young adult, realizes they’re not good enough to be a pro athlete. The next option that comes to mind is working in sports some other way. The New York Islanders are giving people that opportunity.
Today, the Islanders put out on their social media a call to action looking for people for the Ice Crew and the Hype Team. I’m not exactly sure what the job description for a member of the Hype Team is but essentially it’s the stuff they do on the scoreboard during stoppages.
They are looking for candidates who can “be part of the energy that brings fans to their feet”. While, I might not be the best candidate for that, unless they need someone to write snarky or tongue-in-cheek blogs, I do have some ideas for them to make the entertainment more exciting to the fans.
My first is an on-ice entertainment option in-between periods. Have you guys seen “The Freeze” that the Atlanta Braves do? Essentially a guy dressed up in a bodysuit races fans along the warning track. It’s pretty electric.
Here’s my first pitch. Get a fan on skates and someone from the hype crew in a blue and orange bodysuit out on the ice. You have to go from goal line and back with a head start for the fan of course.
Who wouldn’t want to see some fan half in the bag sporting a Cal Clutterbuck jersey and jeans lumbering down the ice while some Apolo Ohno like skater goes flying down the ice when they reach the opposite blue line.
Pitch number two, you’re going to have to forgive me because I don’t remember the name of what this promotion was called but it needs to be brought back. At the Coliseum, they used to sell these pucks with the goal to launch them onto the ice and whoever got closest to center ice won.
Seeing hundreds of pucks getting launched from the back row of the Coli was absolute mayhem. Need that puck raffle like I need air to breathe.
Finally, that brings us to my last-ditch effort to improve the fan experience at games. After we laugh at the poor guy past his prime try to skate the length of a hockey rink and fire pucks onto the ice we need a good sing-along song.
The Red Sox have Sweet Caroline, maybe during the first TV timeout of the third period, we play a song and put the lyrics on the screen karaoke-style and have people sing along. I’m thinking Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” the song that every Long Islander comes out of the womb knowing.
If the Islanders need a consulter or ideas man on anything from trades to arena entertainment I’m your guy. There’s plenty more where that came from in the old noggin, especially if the purse strings open.