I'm using creative lisence considering I had this written before Malone signed with Tampa so just bear with me...
September 25, 2008
Hanging up the phone I reflected on what Mario had said. He had basically told me that I was in. The league and player’s assoc. were making an exception and allowing me to play. I was to join practice today. Sid and I have been working hard the past week and it’s really starting to pay off. I can almost out bench him. I grabbed my bag and keys and headed out the door. Arriving at the arena I smiled. This place was already starting to feel like home. Seeing as Mario called me late, the locker rooms were empty at the moment. The guys were doing warm up stretches so I guess I wasn’t THAT late. As I stepped onto the ice Sid looked up and saw me.
S: Hey Mel.
I waved and slid over to him.
M: So did you hear the ruling?
S: I’ve been on the ice almost all morning so I’m gonna say no.
M: You’re stuck with me, I grinned.
S: Really you’re in? That’s great!
He hugged me making me fall down. In the process he fell down too. Talk about awkward. Slowly he got up and pulled me to my feet. Coach Therrien just looked at me strangely.
CT: Melissa what are you doing here?
I left Sid and skated over toward the bench.
M: Mario called me about a half hour ago. The league approved my appeal to play.
CT: Ok go stretch and practice with the guys. I’ll have Sidney introduce you to everyone later.
With that I was dismissed. Practice was good but very easy. Working with Sid has gotten me in great shape. I must say…I was faster and a more fluent skater than half the other guys. Plus I scored a lot more. After grabbing a quick shower I went to put on nicer clothes. Everyone was still showering. I threw on a denim skirt and a light pink baby-doll style top. Grabbing my flip-flops off the floor I noticed that Sid had gone but left behind a note.
The guys are all meeting for lunch at Eat’n’Park. You are welcome to join us. (11:30am)
PS: My treat…as a congratulatory present.
I smiled and grabbed my bags so I could get going. After all I deserved one relaxing day before dealing with the media storm, which was sure to come. I pulled up to my apartment and went inside to put my hockey bags there. Making sure I had everything I needed, I checked the clock.
Hopping back into my car I started to make my way to the restaurant. Hearing one of my favorite songs I turned up the radio. When it was over I heard an announcement that somehow surprised me.
As of today the NHL had decided to include certain females that they deem ready into the league. This has come due to Pittsburgh native Melissa Norris’s appeal to play. The Pittsburgh Penguins have not announced whether Melissa will be on their official roster at the beginning of the 08-09 season.
I slammed on my brakes not believing what I had just heard. I can’t believe the news leaked that quickly. Composing myself I pulled into the parking lot. Sid had just arrived and was getting out of his SUV. He saw me and came over. I still was shocked and apparently he noticed.
S: So I’m guessing you heard the radio announcement too. I just nodded. Don’t worry about it…this is just a big thing that’ll blow over in no time. Well at least until people realize how good you are.
M: Gee thanks that helped.
Sidney shrugged and led me inside. Half the team had already arrived and was sitting around laughing. Sidney walked over and patted Army on the back. (He had begged and pleaded to be moved back to Pittsburgh.) I followed Sid lest look like an idiot just standing there. Sid pulled out a chair for me and then sat down on my right.
S: Guys…everyone turned to look at him. This is Melissa.
A: New girlfriend Sid?
S: Ummm no, try new teammate.
W: Wait, I heard this on the radio but I didn’t believe it.
M: Well it’s true.
Mal: And you’re from Pitt?
M: Oh Yeah
Mal: Cool another Home-Towner
Everyone else said hi and other pleasantries. After eating and thanking Sid so many times that he yelled at me for it, I headed home to relax and watch a movie.
2 years ago