|THIS WEEK @RWW - 11/20/02
PLAYING ON THE ROAD
By Kyle GargaroThe Red Wings are in the midst of a four-game road trip through Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Edmonton. The road is where you can usually separate the good teams from the great teams. A lot of teams can win in the comforts of their own buildings. However, it takes a special team to consistently win on the road while not only taking on the opposing team, but also the thousands of screaming fans.Red Wings World asked Kris Draper, Manny Legace, Jason Williams and Luc Robitaille to share information on items such as the toughest place to play and the most knowledgeable fans. Here are the results:
What road arena in the NHL is the loudest?
Draper: I would have to say the Shark Tank is pretty loud in San Jose. When those fans get into it and the game is going well it is a loud building to play in.
Legace: St. Louis is pretty loud.
Williams: I remember Los Angeles being pretty loud.
Robitaille: I think they are all the same now. It use to be Chicago Stadium but I couldnt tell you anymore.
Where do you find the fans most knowledgeable?
Draper: I would have to say the Edmonton fans are pretty knowledgeable. I think it is just because of the team they had in the 1980s. Watching players like Gretzky, Coffey and Messier and those kinds of talented guys spoils the fans right away. They were arguably the most talented team to ever play.
Legace: Probably Canada. They are not as loud but they know the game. When they cheer it is for a reason. They dont cheer just because someone fell down or got hit.
Robitaille: Everywhere in Canada the fans are very knowledgeable.
Where are the fans the most vulgar?
Draper: We are pretty lucky. We have a pretty good following in a lot of cities. Obviously with the rivalry between Detroit and Colorado, I think those fans get into it pretty good which is what you want. When you go into a visitors building, you want to hear things about your team.
Legace: Probably New York or Los Angeles. These are bigger cities which really dont know the game. They are just cheering because they have a couple of beers in them.
Where are the worst visiting facilities?
Draper: We are lucky because we pretty much go to all new buildings now. Visiting rooms are really good so I dont have a complaint with any of them.
Legace: New Jersey probably. They have bad dressing rooms. Pittsburgh is pretty bad too.
Williams: New York.
Robitaille: Probably Pittsburgh would be one of the worst because it is an older building. It is pretty cramped.
Where will you find the most Red Wing fans?
Draper: I would have to say Tampa. It fills up there. A lot in Phoenix, too.
Legace: Columbus is pretty packed.
Robitaille: Everywhere. Florida is amazing, you always see red shirts. Columbus is incredible but they are everywhere.
What is the toughest place to play?
Draper: The toughest place is the loudest place in San Jose. It is a team that thrives off how loud their building can get. It makes for a tough game.
Williams: Toronto. I am an Ontario boy and I get a lot of family and friends there so I get nervous. It usually turns out okay, though.
Robitaille: Wherever the best teams are like Colorado and Dallas. Ever year it is where the best teams are.