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Hockey's classic sound

I recall one of my first experiences as a boy playing pond hockey was hearing the sound of a crisp pass hitting a wooden stick blade.

We grew up playing at a "hidden pond" that was on a farm field in a Chicago suburb.

You could always hear the sounds of the pick-up game before you could see it and the sounds always got the juices going to get out there and play.

When I was old enough to go to see the Hawks at the Chicago Stadium, I remember fondly the sounds of NHL stars passing and the unique sound of the puck hitting a Northland Custom Pro or a Victoriaville stick.

I was lucky enough to sneak in once to see the Hawks practicing and remember that sound echoing throughout the stadium.

In watching and listening to the recent final, I was struck and dismayed how that magical sound has now been replaced by the "clicking” sound of the puck hitting a composite blade.

Maybe, just maybe, the NHL could require teams to use wooden sticks for the Outdoor Classic games.

This would certainly help duplicate the sights of "Old Time Hockey," but the sounds as well.

Thom Lent, Erie, Pa.

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