In a clever bit of counterprogramming, the SHL took advantage of the NHL’s decision not to play on Halloween by holding a nationally televised game of their own. As luck would have it, it was a marquee matchup, pitting the Michigan Gray Wolves against the Washington Galaxy at Constellation Center.
Shortly before Washington prepared to hit the ice, Reagle emerged from his office dressed as Mr. T, star of the ’80s action TV series “The A-Team.” As the players took in the sight, a hush fell over the locker room, followed by gales of laughter.
“I think we all figured Coach was going to dress up,” said Galaxy RW Jefferson McNeely. “But I don’t think any of us were ready for that.”
By all accounts, Reagle committed to the role. He donned a mohawk hairpiece and a beard, a staggering amount of gold neck jewelry, a sleeveless red T-shirt, and white athletic socks over his jeans.
“He actually looked surprisingly like Mr. T,” said McNeely. “Only white and, you know, not that muscular.”
The players weren’t the only ones who enjoyed Reagle’s garb. The coach was featured several times on the Jumbotron through the game, the theme from “The A-Team” playing each time. The fans responded every time with wild applause, as Reagle flexed and pointed.
Unfortunately, all the flexing in the world couldn’t bring Washington a win, as the Wolves captured a 3-1 win. But the coach remained in character throughout his postgame press conference. Asked what the next day’s practice would be like after the loss, Reagle replied, “Prediction: pain.” Asked if he still considered the Galaxy favorites in the East, the coach snapped, “I pity the fool who bets against us.” When a reporter mentioned Washington’s upcoming rroad trip, Reagle vowed, “I ain’t getting on no airplane.” After a couple more question, the coach barked, “I ain’t got time for no jibba-jabba,” and walked off the podium.
This was the first time on the season that Reagle had donned a costume. It was rumored that the Galaxy front office had either begged or ordered him to stop, on the grounds that it made him look unprofessional. The temptation of coaching a game on Halloween was apparently too much for him to resist. Asked if he expected to receive static from the front office for his costume, Reagle winked and said, “I don’t worry. I don’t doubt. I’m daring. I’m a rebel.”