Today will be light on hockey but heavy on hockey players past and present. The Allen Americans have brought so much joy to the community over the years and the joy is much more than four straight championships and success on the ice. The players and their families have been great ambassadors for the team and the game of hockey. North Texas is lucky to have the Allen Americans.
- You can't miss when writing a Christmas day blog by starting out with a puppy story. It will be a Christmas to remember for Allen Americans tough guy Derek Mathers who like most tough guys is a super nice guy off the ice. Derek is in Allentown, Pennsylvania for Christmas visiting his girlfriend, Jade, and their newly adopted puppy, whose name is Dallas. Dallas along with his mother and six litter mates were rescued from the recent wildfires in Tennessee by Jade's mom who is very active in helping lost and rescued dogs. The best part of the story is Jade and Dallas will be moving to Allen to join Derek. A big Texas welcome to Jade and Dallas!
|Dallas is moving to Dallas|
|Jade and Dallas will be joining Derek in Allen|
As I was reflecting on what to write about on this Christmas Day, I noticed how many messages there are on social media about spending the holidays with friends and families. That is not true for many hockey players as the Christmas break does not allow enough time to get back home. Friends and family all too often are teammates and their families which is great, but not the same as friends and family back home. Being a minor pro hockey player truly is a "hard knock life" and the current season has been a challenge for the team both on and off the ice.
|The Costello's - 2016 - Camden, Avery, Ashley (front), Chad & Cayne (back)|
|This was posted in 2014 by the Allen Americans - only Gary Steffes (lower left) remains|
|Aaron Gens and soon to be Mrs Gens (in July) Kellie Wyatt - 2016|
|London, Whitney, Harper & Bruce Graham - Nottingham, England 2012|
|Graham kids 2016 - Harper, Beckett, London|
|Eric Roy and his girlfriend Alisha - 2016|
|Nicole, Sawyer & Sutter Schaafsma - 2014|
|Sutter, Sawyer, Sullivan Schaafsma with mom Nicole where else but at a hockey game - 2016|
|Jackson Gill loves Santa - 2016|
|Jackson Gill's first Christmas with Angie, Riley & dog Guinny - 2015|
|Holly, Beau, Lynden & Trevor Ludwig - 2016|
|Lynden's first Christmas and skate with dad, Trevor Ludwig - 2014|
|The most famous dog in Allen history, Pearl (@Pearlilicious11), was Phil Fox's "wing dog"|
|The "original" Jarret Lukin - 2016|
Once again thank you, thank, you, thank you to all players past and present for the sacrifices you have made to follow your dreams and the joy you have brought to the fans in Allen on and off the ice. Your determination on the ice and kindness off the ice is both noticed and appreciated. May this Christmas day be a joyous one for you and yours!
|Happy Holidays from Barry the Blogger|