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by Bill Cain

The Devils' Details

A Daily Gazette sports blog
Bill Cain covers the Albany Devils
 

Reaction to Hurricane Sandy

By Bill Cain
Wednesday, October 31, 2012

From the reports and pictures I’ve seen online, the storm surge was arguably the most destructive aspect of Hurricane Sandy when it washed ashore this week.

Several of the Albany Devils hail from towns that received some wind damage and heavy rain, maybe even lost power. But from West Islip on the southern shore of Long Island, right wing Matt Anderson had family and friends as close to the danger of rising tidewaters as anyone.

“It’s crazy. Some of the photos I’m seeing ... I have friends that live right on the water, and they had four or five feet of water in their homes,” Anderson said after Wednesday’s practice at the Times Union Center in Albany. “For the most part now, most of the water is gone. The surge is gone, they can get to their homes. Still, it’s pretty devastating. Between my sister and my parents, my mom’s got power, so that at least keeps me a little more sane while all that’s going on. At least someone has power and they’re able to take care of themselves. But it’s pretty catastrophic.”

Like the rest of folks upstate, Anderson reads the reports and sees the surreal pictures of empty roadways and dark skyscrapers in Manhattan and is amazed.

“I hear the bridges just opened back up [Tuesday] at noon or 1 o’clock,” he said. “I’ve got friends who work in New York City, but they can’t get there. Some of the buildings down in the financial district still don’t have power. It’s pretty incredible.”

Albany coach Rick Kowalsky has played and coached in Trenton, N.J., and while a bit inland and a bit north from where Sandy made landfall, there still was water damage in the city that houses the ECHL’s Titans.

“I do know there was some flooding,” Kowalsky said. “Just from living there with the Delaware River, I’ve heard from friends more than hockey players that there was some flooding there. The school my kids went to is shut down for the week.”

TITANS GAME STILL ON

The Albany Devils have a working agreement with Trenton and Elmira, which allows the Devils to send prospects to either of the ECHL teams. The Titans’ website said the home game Friday against Reading will go on as scheduled, but the Titans — who are the Philadelphia Flyers’ affiliate — are not practicing in the building this week. Instead, the team will practice at the Flyers Skate Zone in Voorhees, N.J.

Talk about awkward.

First, the Devils’ prospects sent to Trenton are playing primarily with Flyers’ prospects. Now, the team will even be practicing where the Flyers work through training camp.

Two Devils who were in Trenton recently were recalled to Albany, though. Left wings Harry Young and Chris McKelvie have been skating with Albany, Young as a defenseman.

BOARDWALK HALL SURVIVES

Closer to where Sandy came ashore, Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City seems no worse for wear after the storm.

The Daily Gazette's college hockey writer Ken Schott spoke with ECAC Hockey's commissioner and he said the site, which will host the league's championship semifinals and finals, was fit for use.

This should come as welcome news for Devils fans in New Jersey who wanted a shorter trip to see the Devils than a long haul to upstate New York. Albany will host four games at Boardwalk Hall, Nov. 25 against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Jan. 13 against Bridgeport, Jan. 20 against Adirondack and Feb. 24 against Hershey. All games are scheduled for 4 p.m.

According to Schott's blog, which can be read HERE, the arena is fine, and the parking garage's lower-level took some water.

 

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