For those of us desperately needing a hockey fix by September, grab your passports and cross the pond for Scotland's Gardiner Cup. In those long months since the end of the 08' season the Gardiner Cup offers an early and distinctive treat. The Edinburgh Capitals and the Belfast Giants will meet the Hamilton Bulldogs and Toronto Marlies in a tournament in Edinburgh on September 24th, 26th and 27th. Hockey in beautiful Edinburgh, kilts, haggis, bagpipes and single malt whiskey, what is not to love about that package?
The tournament is named for Charles “Chuck” Gardiner the first Scot named to the NHL Hall of Fame. It is expected that the series will be available by net feed and by audio link. It will be the first time an American Hockey League team has met head to head with a British Elite team. It looks to be an interesting match-up.
Although on opposite sides of the ocean, there is more contact between these leagues than one might think. Several familiar names have been part of the Belfast Giants roster over the years, starting with this year's addition of Sean McMorrow, Ed Courtenay, and former NHLer Theo Fleury. Next month a member of the current Giants roster, blueliner Davey Philips, will be attending the Chicago Blackhawks prospect camp.
Tickets for the Gardiner Cup games are available through the Edinburgh Capital's box office, http://www.edinburgh-capitals.com. The Belfast Giants website at www.kingdomofthegiants.com has a helpful line on out-of-town games and lodgings for those thinking of making the trip. From all the publicity it looks like not only will there be hockey in September but quite a party being planned. What could be better!
For the full story linkage below: