Thursday, April 15, 2010

New Minor League Record

 Robin Bouchard celebrates his 683rd career goal, setting the new minor league hockey record during the Muskegon Lumberjacks game against the Quad City Mallards. 

    The Lumberjacks Goalie Sebastien Centomo makes a save during the game against the Quad City Mallards.

    I have gotten better at calming my nerves before a game.  Every game is a matter of patient persistence, following the action while waiting for the right moment.  Letting the yourself become a part of the game.  Trying to think like the players, to anticipate their next actions.  As the game progresses you begin to feel the rhythm of the game.  Every game is different, not just between different sports, but between different games played by the same team, and each game it's own rhythm.  Until something really good happens. 
    The action in hockey is more or less continuous.  You can watch as the circumstances for certain pretty good photographs start to form, from break away plays with shots on goal to fights.  Most events build, but not a great reactions.  Great reactions are spontaneous outbursts.  They happen fast. 
   My mission was to photograph Robin Bouchard make his historic goal.  Many of Bouchard's goals are impossible to an observer all you see is another player shoot and Bouchard happens to deflect the puck into the net.  The technique usually misses, but it works often enough that Bouchard is now the minor league scoring record holder.  Because of the importance of getting a good photograph of Bouchard making history I decided on a new strategy to cover the game.  I would track Bouchard everywhere he went with my camera.  When he left the ice I would shoot the game, but as soon as he left came back onto the ice I would be on him, and I would continue until he made history or the game was over.
   Even with my theoretically fool proof plan I missed Bouchard's historic shot, or rather my camera does not have x-ray vision to see through the player who blocked my view.  But I got his reaction after he scored, fortunately he turned right after he scored.  If he had turned left I may have missed his most exuberant moment. 

No comments: