NY Islanders: 10 years ago I survived the Stadium Series game at Yankee Stadium

2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series - New York Rangers v New York Islanders
2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series - New York Rangers v New York Islanders / Jeff Zelevansky/GettyImages
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I survived 2014 Stadium Series game at Yankee Stadium.

Like a lot of die-hard fans, there are certain events and moments in your team's history you just have to present for, no matter which elements you have to brave. I'm not a season ticket holder, but I pick and choose the games I attend with precision. I was at the last game regular season game at the Nassau Coliseum, the first game at Barclays Center, the opening of UBS Arena and so on.

I changed at the office into several layers, the final piece of outerwear being a dark navy Isles sweater from circa 2002. I was also equipped with a chrome "NY" Stadium Series blue ski cap I was gifted for Christmas. That's possible when the design comes out in November!

I left midtown and hopped on the uptown B train to Yankee Stadium, where I was set to meet a friend of mine from grammar school I hadn't seen in over a decade and haven't seen since. He lived in Pennsylvania but was occasionally in the NYC area and took my extra ticket posted on social media a few days earlier. The lower the forecast for the temperatures went, the harder it was to sell.

I arrived in the Bronx and went to Billy's Sports Bar for the pre-game festivities. As a Mets fan, I had never been there, and it was an awesome pre-game vibe between rival fanbases - it definitely beats the chop shops. My friend met me there, and we caught up and probably talked about the bright future we had with Thomas Vanek now playing on the top line with John Tavares.

We bundled up and headed into the new Yankee Stadium, getting our first cup of hot chocolate (while it lasted), and got to our upper deck seats to get our first glimpse of outdoor hockey. We then took in a "memorable' pre-game performance by a mink-coat-wearing Cee Lo Green that wasn't exactly a perfect match for New York hockey fans.

Michelle Williams
2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series - New York Rangers v New York Islanders / Jeff Zelevansky/GettyImages

It was a balmy 22 degrees when the puck dropped, and for the most part, I could follow along with the play, though all the sounds seemed to be delayed as slap shots reverberated up to the rafters. I've been cold before, but rarely have I ever attempted to stay outside in those miserable conditions for over three hours. I attended the last game ever at Giants Stadium (Jets vs. Bengals) on a Sunday night in 2009, and it felt like a beach vacation compared to that night.

After a scoreless first, Brock Nelson broke through to give the Islanders the lead that warmed the soul for a bit. We may go home with frostbite, but perhaps two points as well? The Rangers quickly scored 40 seconds later, sending the game to the third period tied.

2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series - New York Rangers v New York Islanders
2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series - New York Rangers v New York Islanders / Elsa/GettyImages

Things deteriorated from there. We went to use the restrooms at intermission and realized that no one was leaving when they were done. I was among many of the young men who chose to stay shoulder-to-shoulder in the bathroom until the start of the third period. The Blueshirts scored early in the third to take the lead, and the Islanders couldn't beat Henrik Lundqvist with a late push.

Fireworks went off because why not, and the Islanders and Rangers shook hands like they would if they ever played in a playoff series again. We left our seats, and if there was one positive about the cold, it was that no one was in the mood to start taunting the other fanbase. We all just wanted to get to the subway or our cars as quickly as humanly possible.

Am I glad i went? Of course. It was a moment and a memory that somehow is already a decade ago. For everyone braving the elements in February at MetLife stadium, I wish for you temperatures in the 40's and a better result.