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Madness Up Close

When I was in high school, I would often head downtown with my friends Dave and Dan to check out Pittsburgh Penguin games. The drill would go something like this: the three of us would buy the $7 nose bleed seats at the door, watch the first period from them, and then sneak down to the lower section in between periods to get a better seat. Since the Penguins sucked pretty badly then (think, if you can remember this far back, pre-Mario Lemieux) they never sold out and this plan almost always worked to perfection.

Anyway, fast forward twenty-some odd years to tonight where my friend Bob and I decided to go check out the Pitt-UCLA Sweet Sixteen NCAA tournament game being played in San Jose. Bob bought tickets only a day or two ago, and when we got there, we realized that we not only were in the nose bleed seats, we were so high up there might be pressurization issues.

What did we do? We reverted back to the high school plan. Since there were two games at the arena (Kansas vs. Southern Illinois was the first), we figured that some folks would leave after the first game was complete and we could just snag their seats. Tonight the plan worked to supreme perfection. A family was heading towards the door and Bob asked where their seats were. Their answer was perhaps the most beautiful English language phrase I have heard: "Row One - seats 9 and 10"

That's Row 1 - as in right on the court, directly behind the Pitt bench. Put it this way, we were so close I almost picked up a charge. Anyway, sadly Pitt lost tonight - but what a game from those seats. We were so close that when at one point I excitedly motioned for a UCLA player to be called for traveling, my friend Dave saw me do this on TV and sent me a text message telling me that my charge call was spot on. Unbelievable.

Anyway, a great time and a big thanks to Bob! Here are a few pics from our seats:

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Comments (1)

Rumple:

Thanks for the Zabes flashback. I just told that story while sitting at a standing-room-only Pens game last week. Imagine this, if you can. For the last 2 weeks, the Pens have sold SRO tickets for $35. You are assigned a numbered space along the wall behind Section B.

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