The Dream of the Devils

March 12, 2012
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What do you see every day? A nice car, maybe friends or family. How about an eighteen year old girl in jeans and a t-shirt with a hockey stick and bag walking into the Prudential Center? She is ready to chase her dreams, making the New Jersey Devils. She’s the only girl there, except for some moms cheering on their sons or husbands. The girl goes to slip on her pads, skates, and her jersey that says “Danny” on the back. Before she walks onto the ice, her friend stops her.

“Are you sure you wanna do this?” Ty asks.

“Of course I do, why wouldn’t I? It’s not every day that your favorite sports team EVER holds open tryouts.” She replies.

“Well, I don’t know about this, I don’t want you to get hurt. They’re eventually gonna find out you’re a girl.”

“They won’t, trust me,” She says as she skates onto the ice and away from the boy that she has known since they were two.

Suddenly the whistle blows and everyone skates towards Jacque Lemaire, the head coach of the Devils. He asks everyone to take a knee and tells them how the tryouts will work. It works in a way which he calls the skate down. Luckily for Danny, Lemaire decides to start with the skating speed drill. During the drill, no one could catch up to her or even see her as she goes by. All of the coaches and staff have their eyes on her. Just for a second, Danny looks around the ice rink to find signs saying “Devils Open Tryouts” and “Do You Think You Can Make The Team?”. As she is looking around the bottom part of the ice rink, she make eye contact with Ty. He mouths “keep going”. She smiles as she turns forward and skates even faster.
It is time for the passing drill, another one of Danny’s strong suits. Luckily she was paired with a very talented player from one of the travel teams she plays against. They were like gold together. The coaches’ heads are going back and forth trying to keep up with the puck. As they approach the blue line, the coaches signal them to stop.

“Hey, great job,” the player from the other team tries to say between his deep breathes for air.

“Thanks, you too,” Danny replies perfectly.

“You look very familiar; Do you play on any travel team?”

“Uh, it’s not a team from around here, you wouldn’t know about it,”. She shakes off the sudden feeling of fear and starts to think that if she doesn’t get caught, she was okay. Again, the whistle blows and it is time for shooting.

Danny can’t believe what she is seeing. All star goalie Martin Brodeur is skating towards the net to stop the pucks for the prospects. Danny ends up fifth in the line and starts to think of ways to put a little more flare to her breakaway goal strategy. Finally, she is up. She grabs the puck and does moves the professionals don’t do. She twirls, jumps, goes down on one knee, twirls again, and then, what looks like no effort, she shoots a rocket up into the top corner of the net. Everyone is stunned and nobody will talk. On her way back, she is receiving millions of high fives when her skate catches an edge. She falls and as soon as her helmet hits the ice, it rolls off. As her ponytail holder breaks from impact, all her hair falls down causing gasps from all the other players and coaches. Ty runs onto the ice pushing his way through people. He gets to her as she is trying to get up. He knows she started crying as soon as she fell. The reason for her tears is in-explainable. The coaches decide to let the rest of the people skate while Lamaire and Brodeur go in to talk to Danny. They know that she probably is already getting dressed to go home. Jacque Lamaire walks in to see Ty and Danny sitting at Zach Parise’s locker.

“You know he had some troubles when we picked him up,” Lamaire says nodding towards the name tag. Ty knows that Danny never gives up a chance to show off her Parise knowledge. He knows something is wrong when she doesn’t answer. She wants to respond, but doesn’t have enough strength to even talk.

“We love your talent. Your accuracy and speed is amazing. The one thing is we’re not sure if we could accept you onto our team because you’re a,” Lamaire hesitates, “well, a girl.”

This seems to make Danny cry even more. Lamaire decides to go back out to the ice, but before he does, he asks for Danny to come with him. He goes over to the other coaches and tells them that he was going to call the head of the NHL, by himself.

He comes back after about thirty minutes. His facial expression was enough for Danny to smile back. She knows something big is about to happen. Lamaire tells everyone to line up. He starts to call names and tell them to go to one side of the ice or the other.

“Danny, I mean Danniella, Sota, you are on the left side of the ice,” Lamaire adds, “and if you’re wondering, the left side is the players that will be added to our roster tonight.”
Danny looks around at the people who made it. There only are a couple, probably only four or five. She really can’t tell. She just can’t think right. Her brain and body is in so much shock from making the team, she doesn’t realize that she is crying again, but this time it is happy tears. Ty comes up from behind and hugs her. Danny looks at Ty and he, too, is crying. This is going to be the moment they will never forget; the day the girl, who was disguised as a boy, made the New Jersey Devils. Coach Lamaire comes up to her right after Ty jumps on her again.
“So, how does it feel to be the first starting woman forward in the NHL?” He says.
“It feels too good to be true,” she pauses, “Coach, why did you do this for me?”
“‘Cause you deserve it. I have never seen a person work so hard with such a big goal. Not even my players who are trying to get the Cup back home work that hard.”
On his way out the door, he yells that practice starts tomorrow at nine AM. She knows the best parts are yet to come and she won’t just have Ty, but all her family and teammates.

Join the Discussion

This article has 8 comments. Post your own now!

SpringRayyn said...
Mar. 16, 2012 at 10:49 pm
I did like it, although the ending was predictable. I figured it out not long into the piece. In the middle for a bit I wasn't sure, but after that I realized that the ending would be like that.
Sam H. said...
Mar. 16, 2012 at 2:30 pm
nice work, however the devil are terrible
ala4softball replied...
Mar. 19, 2012 at 7:02 am
ala4softball replied...
Mar. 19, 2012 at 7:03 am
Epiclyawesome said...
Mar. 15, 2012 at 8:25 pm
Even though I'm not a huge hockey fan (GASP) I really liked your work! It's inpiring, fun, and very well written. GREAT JOB!! If you want to, could you check out my story? It's called The Story of the Demons. I would really appreciate it if you could rate and comment :)
ala4softball replied...
Mar. 16, 2012 at 8:35 am
Thanks so much! i will sure check it out. it sounds great! please tell your friends about mine! 
abecer12 said...
Mar. 15, 2012 at 6:25 am
you are obviously writing about the pittsburgh penguins and playing with ben lovejoy!
ala4softball replied...
Mar. 16, 2012 at 8:36 am
o shhh. 
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