Offseason Update: Badgers Try Hand at Fashion Design

Hockey and high fashion don’t typically mix.  But when your team is owned by a fashion designer, which the Boston BadgersPaul Galette is, such an unusual scenario can become reality.

The Badgers just finished their most successful season ever, posting a .500 record for the first time.  It was a feel-good season for the team, and the players expressed a desire to get back together during the offseason.  Galette accommodated that desire with an unorthodox offer: he invited his players to spend a day at his fashion house, including an opportunity to design their own outfits.

“It’s definitely not a typical hockey-player activity,” said Galette.  “But I knew it would be a fun creative opportunity for them, and something that they don’t get to do every day.  So why not?”

Almost all of the Badgers showed up.  Some of them came because they wanted another chance to hang out with their teammates.  Some were genuinely interested in seeing how fashion houses work.  Others… well, in the words of RW Levi Rudyard: “I figured I’d have a chance to meet some models.”

When the players arrived, Galette took them on a brief tour of the house and introduced them to some of his fellow designers.  “It was pretty cool to meet them, really,” said LW Pascal Royal.  “They are in some ways like us.  Everyone thinks we just get to have fun all the time, but there is a lot of work into it.  Designing is the same.”

After that, the owner brought the players into a “collaboration space,” a room that allows designers to work together and bounce ideas off of one another.  The players gathered around a large table in the center of the room, where they were given paper and a variety of art supplies and invited to design their own outfits.

“I told them they could be as practical or as whimsical as they wanted to be,” Galette said.  “Designers can get their inspiration from anywhere: natural scenes, animals, things they see on the street.  There are no rules and no bad ideas.  Even something completely crazy or unworkable can light a spark that leads to a beautiful design in the end.”

The design session was a bit awkward at first because, as D Matt Cherner noted, “I haven’t done any drawing since I was in grade school.”  But eventually they warmed to the task, and they came up with a number of fascinating designs.  LW Casey Thurman drew an evening gown inspired by a peacock’s feathers.  Cherner designed a suit that resembled the Northern Lights.  G Roger Orion sketched out a tuxedo that featured the Badgers’ colors and logo.  D Brody “Bruiser” McCallan, meanwhile, designed a truly wild outfit which he described as “the world’s only pimp superhero.  Like Superfly, but even flyer.”

Little did the players know it, but Galette had another surprise in store for them.  After treating the team to a lavish lunch at a nearby restaurant, Galette announced that he would have their designs made into actual outfits.  And a couple weeks later, he invited them back to see those outfits on display, as he held a fashion show that the team streamed on YouTube.

“I knew they’d go gaga to see their designs brought to life,” Galette said.  “It’s an awesome feeling for any designer, the first time they see their designs in real life.”

The players reacted with laughter and delight as they saw their designs paraded up and down the runway.  And in additional to actual models, several of the players themselves took a turn on the catwalk.  Orion modeled his Badgers-colored tuxedo, saying “I wish I’d had this for my wedding, although my wife is probably glad I didn’t.”  Thurman modeled Cherner’s Northern Lights suit, and trilled “I Feel Pretty” in falsetto as he walked.  McCallan, meanwhile, not only donned his pimp-superhero costume, he also closed out the show by squeezing into Thurman’s peacock-feather dress.  As the burly blueliner sashayed along, his teammates laughed and catcalled.

“Yeah, they made fun,” said McCallan, “but only because they didn’t want to admit that I totally rocked the dress.”

All in all, it was a fun team-building event, and the players thoroughly enjoyed themselves.  “If you’d told me I was going to love designing fashion outfits, I’d have called you crazy,” said C Alain Beauchesne.  “But these were memories I will keep for all my life.  Except for the Bruiser in that dress… that I hope to forget.”

SHL Player of the Week – Week 13

Alain Beauchesne

The SHL selected Boston Badgers C Alain Beauchesne as its Player of the Week.  The Badgers had a strong week, going 3-0-1, and Beauchesne’s brilliant performance was a key part of their success.  For the week, the center recorded 9 points (2 goals, 7 assists).  Beauchesne now has 25 goals on the season, which ties him for seventh the the SHL.

On Sunday, Beauchesne had a goal and an assist in the Badgers’ three-goal third period to knock off Anchorage, 4-2.  On Tuesday – the night of the Pizza Riot – Beauchesne had a pair of assists as Boston beat Portland 4-0.  And on Saturday, the center had a four-point day (1 goal, 3 assists) in the Badgers’ 6-2 thrashing of Kansas City.

“I think Boosh is really blossoming lately,” said Badgers coach Kyle Barrow.  “He’s always been an enormous talent, but as we’ve been adding guys, we’ve really unlocked him.  He’s got teammates who can keep up with him, and now he’s really going to become a force in the league.”

Angry Badgers Fans Nearly Start Riot Over Pizza Denied

Fans of the Boston Badgers get their excitement where they can.  In the Badgers’ first two seasons of existence, they finished dead last.  This season, the team has made some significant upgrades – including midseason trades for LW Casey Thurman and RW Gordon Lunsford – but they still have a sub-.500 record and are a long shot to make the playoffs.  But while they may have much hope for the postseason, Boston fans have something else to get excited about.  A local pizza chain runs a promotion for all home games: if the Badgers win and score five or more goals, all fans in attendance can bring in their ticket stubs to get a free pizza the next day.

Needless to say, the promotion is hugely popular.  When the Badgers are sitting on four goals late in the game, chants of “Piz-za! Piz-za!” will echo throughout Shawmut Arena.  After that, every save by the opposing goaltender is met with robust boos.  When the fans are denied their shot at free pizza, things can get ugly.  And on Tuesday, when a questionable call by a referee wiped the pizza-winning goal off the board, the fans nearly rioted.

Up to that point, the crowd had been in a good mood.  The Badgers were hosting the Western Division leaders, the Portland Bluebacks, and the home team was well on its way to a surprising rout.  Boston goalie Roger Orion stopped every Portland shot, while the Badgers scored repeatedly. After D Brett Stolte scored Boston’s fourth goal less than five minutes into the third, only one question remained: would the fans get their much-desired pie?

Lix Darnholm

As the game reached its closing minutes, the familiar “Piz-za! Piz-za!” chant rang from the rafters.  And with two and a half minutes remaining, it appeared that the fans would go home happening.  Boston broke loose on an odd-man rush that ended with LW Lix Darnholm firing a shot that trickled between the pads of Bluebacks netminder Jesse Clarkson and trickled toward the net.  As the puck crossed the line, Darnholm and a Portland defender crashed into the goal and dislodged it from its moorings.  The goal siren went off and the crowd went wild, with visions of pepperoni dancing in their heads.

But referee Brandon Fosse called for a review to see whether the puck crossed the line before the net came loose.  The crowd booed as Fosse watched replays for several minutes.  And when Fosse came back to center ice and announced that the goal didn’t count, the mood turned furious.  A new chant filled the air: “Bull-s***!  Bull-s***!”  About a minute later, a tense situation turned worse when Fosse sent Stolte to the penalty box for elbowing, essentially ending Boston’s chance at a fifth goal.  Fans began throwing coins and beer cups onto the ice.  A couple people even ran down the aisles and tried to climb the glass to assault Fosse; they were ejected from the arena.

The game ended with a 4-0 Badgers victory, but no pizza.  Irate fans continued to aim obscene chants at the refs and bombard the ice with debris.  Fosse and his crew needed a police escort to escape unscathed.

After the game, Badgers coach Kyle Barrow admonished the fans for their reaction.  “Look, I understand the allure of free pizza,” the coach noted.  “But come on, if you can afford a ticket to the game, you can afford your own pizza, right?  And there’s no excuse for threatening the refs.  You can be unhappy about a call without turning into a mob.”

Stolte, on the other hand, seemed impressed by the fans’ wrath.  “You don’t want to mess with these fans, boy!” enthused Stolte.  “We’re a team with an edge, and I love that our crowds have an edge too.  Get between them and their pizza, and… well, sucks to be you.”

2020 SHL Week 11 Transactions

  • On Monday, the Dakota Jackalopes activated C Tanner Brooks from the injured list.  Shortly before the All-Star break, Brooks suffered an upper-body injury.  Although the injury initially did not seem that serious, Brooks wound up missing over three weeks.  As the Jackalopes had an available roster spot, they did not need to make a compensating move to activate Brooks.
  • Also on Monday, the Hershey Bliss‘ CHL affiliate in Milwaukee placed LW Karl Gjovik on the injured list.  Gjovik exited in the first period of Sunday’s 3-1 win over Cleveland after being upended on a devastating check, and did not return.  He is expected to miss at least two weeks.  To replace Gjovik, Milwaukee signed F Jerry Cazenovia to a short-term contract.
  • On Wednesday, the Hamilton Pistols activated C Marco Venezio from the injured list.  The veteran center missed 10 games with a lower=body injury suffered just before the All-Star break.  In order to make room for Venezio, the Pistols reassigned C Hilliard Macy to their CHL affiliate in Oshawa, and released F Bobby Warner from Oshawa.
  • Wednesday was the trading deadline. The following trades were consummated at the deadline:
    • The Michigan Gray Wolves traded RW Gordon Lunsford to the Boston Badgers for RW Rory Socarra. (More details here.) After the trade, Boston demoted RW Felix Delorme to their CHL affiliate in Hartford, and recalled F Jacques Bacon from Hartford.
    • The Gray Wolves traded LW Misha Petronov, F Cary Estabrook, and D Brandon Arrowood to the New York Night for LW Flynn Danner, F Henry Constantine, and D Anson Brank.  (More details here.) After the trade, Michigan demoted LW Fendrick Scanlan to their CHL affiliate in Cleveland, and New York promoted RW Harris Wondolowski from their affiliate in Utah.
    • The Dakota Jackalopes traded D Victor Addison to Boston in exchange for D Jackson Creed.  After the trade, the Badgers demoted D Bjorn Tollefson to their minor-league affiliate in Hartford.
    • Michigan traded C Warren Marlow to the Quebec Tigres in exchange for C Phil Miller, LW Carl Bleyer, and a 1st-round draft pick. (More details here.) After the trade, the Gray Wolves released F Caleb Moulton.  The Tigres demoted C Dwight Flynn to their CHL affiliate in Halifax, and signed F Tim Daisey to a minor-league deal.
  • On Saturday, the Anchorage Igloos recalled RW Jean Pierre Fleury from their CHL affiliate in Minnesota. The Igloos demoted Fleury to Minnesota during the All-Star break, and he played brilliantly there, recording 19 points in 12 games, including the CHL’s first-ever five-goal game.  To make room for Fleury, the Igloos reassigned RW Lionel LaNeige to Minnesota.