For the second straight year Boston College hockey fans are exposed to the wonder that is the Beanpot consolation game.
Played before the main event of the evening, the Beanpot is kind of like a house show in wrestling. It is played with a sparse (to put it nicely) crowd at the TD Garden, without any video streaming (this means no TV or Internet video), and it is kind of viewed as an afterthought in the tournament.
And the thing is, it really shouldn’t be viewed that way.
Hockey scribes and fans alike cannot view the Beanpot in a vacuum: the tournament usually pits a group of teams that have NCAA tournament aspirations, which creates significant Pairwise implications. When BC played Harvard in the consolation game in 2015, BC’s overtime victory over the Crimson proved crucial in the Eagles making the tournament. Going forward to last year, if BC had defeated Northeastern in the consolation game, the Eagles would have made the NCAA tournament.
The game is incredibly important, which is why it is odd that the setting of the game is what it currently is.
You can’t blame the paying audience for missing out on the game. It’s a 4:30 start on a Monday afternoon all the way up in the North End.
And you can’t blame NESN for not wanting to broadcast the consolation game, because it would preempt *looks at schedule* a replay of the Bruins/Devils game from Sunday evening, because that does super great ratings.
But all that means is that the Beanpot consolation, as it is presently constituted, isn’t doing what it is supposed to do.
What is the solution? I don’t pretend to know the magic answer. Perhaps it makes sense to move the consolation game to campus arenas, because at least the schools would have access to its internal infrastructure used to stream games during the regular season. Maybe the committee needs to negotiate to use the equipment at the TD Garden to stream games. Or perhaps BC’s athletic communications person (and all around good guy) Mark Majewski should just stand in the camera bay and just Periscope the whole game.
Whatever the solution, one of the most important games of the season for both Boston College and Harvard will be an afterthought, and that seems wrong.
(p.s.) Mark Majewski is a good person, and you should definitely follow him on Twitter @markmajewski.
Who: Boston College Eagles (14-12-3, 14-5-0 HEA) vs.
Harvard Crimson (10-10-4, 9-6-3 ECAC)
When: Monday, February 11, 2018
Where: TD Garden, Boston, MA
How to Watch: lol
How to Listen: WEEI 850 AM or BCEagles.com
How to Follow: @BCHockey, @BCInterruption, @LBerestecki, @Salzano14, @JoeGrav, @ArthurBailin, @Caligraphy15.
Ice Cream of the Game
Many of our other previews feature a beverage of the game, but this year we’ll be picking an ice cream dessert of the game for MIH games. Why, you ask? Because when Jerry York got the BC coaching job, he went out for ice cream sundaes to celebrate.
talenti Sea Salt Caramel
I realize that technically there is probably sea salt in this ice cream, but you can’t even taste it, which begs the question, why not come up with a more exotic accompaniment than sea salt? Sure, there might not technically be squid in the ice cream, but doesn’t Squid Caramel ice cream sound more appealing than Sea Salt Caramel?
No, it doesn’t. Stop agreeing with me, it’s a bad idea.
Every game, we have the cats of the Ellen M. Gifford Cat Shelter (located right across from BC at 30 Undine Road) predict the outcome of the games. The Gifford Cat Shelter is the oldest cageless, no-kill shelter in the USA.
Since I have taken over the hockey Final Thoughts and Predictions, and don’t live with a cat, I offered to utilize the stray cats of Downtown Athens to execute Cat Predictions, but our managing editor shot that idea down due to it being “really bad.”
So anyway, here’s Coffee Berestecki (our managing editor’s eldest cat) predicting BC winning in a close 3-2 game.
BC 3, Harvard 2:
Harvard was a .500 team with Ryan Donato on the team, and he’s in South Korea. BC gets its first out-of-conference win in front of a crowd smaller than my Civil Procedure class.
Northeastern 5, Boston University 3
Jim Madigan said after Northeastern won the Hockey East championship in 2016 that he’d be knocking on the doors of alumni who said that they wouldn’t give until Northeastern won Hockey East or the Beanpot. No word on how donations went, but he’ll have another opportunity to get donations this year.
Then again, I’ll believe Northeastern can win a Beanpot when I see Jim Madigan holding that sucker up on the TD Garden ice.