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February 17, 2009 E-MAIL PRINT Bookmark and Share

Committee Satisfied With Ice Issues in D.C.

by Adam Wodon/Managing Editor

The Division I Men's Ice Hockey Committee is satisfied that the Verizon Center ice conditions will be fine for the Frozen Four, after addressing concerns with arena officials this week.

The committee was following up a Washington Post newspaper article, where a number of Washington Capitals NHL players vigorously complained about the ice conditions.

That prompted the committee to express its concerns.

"We have some expectations," said committee chair Steve Cady, the associate athletic director at Miami. "(Arena officials) said they had a basketball game in the afternoon, and when they have that, and try to turn it four hours later to hockey, the ice isn't good.

"Now, one of the requirments (for the Frozen Four) is, we have that (ice) for the whole week. So I don't anticipate problems with the ice. By the time Thursday comes (the FF semifinals), everything should be fine."

Cady said the biggest concern was a comment from an arena official about it being 58 degrees outside for the game that day.

"I said you don't think it will be (higher) than 58 in April?" Cady said. "And they said, 'That was just someone talking.' It was about being 58 degrees and how they have to have it warmer in the building for basketball, and they couldn't get it down that fast.

"We follow the same standards the NHL does in terms of the surface temperature of the ice, humidity in the building and temperature in the building. They are aware of them. But they just said, when they have a basketball game before it, they can't get there."

Cady was encouraged further that Washington arena officials said they were bringing in noted ice expert Dave Loverock from Toronto to help during Frozen Four week.

"He's known for many, many years as one of the top ice men in North America," Cady said. "He'll be there all week. ... It should be fine. After the dialogue with them, I'm confident, knowing what their schedule is, understanding what the one comment was about, and knowing Dave Loverock will be there."

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