October 17, 2011
Scary moment at the beginning of Monday night's contest between the Edmonton Oilers and the Nashville Predators, as the large oil derrick through which the Oilers skate at the beginning of every game malfunctioned when one of the cables hoisting it back into the rafters gave way.
The derrick looked dangerously close to crashing down on the ice, swerving over the home bench before stopping short, held back, thankfully, by the other supports. Reports are that it's now simply dangling there, which is sort of terrifying.
It apparently wasn't a threat to fall further, however, as the Oilers and Predators went on with the game as scheduled.
Expect this scare to bolster support for Oilers owner Daryl Katz's attempts to move the team into a brand-new arena. Rexall Place, built in 1974, is one of the oldest buildings in the NHL, and Katz has been working towards a better home for the Oilers since he bought the team in 2008.
Katz got closer to that end only three days ago, withdrawing a no-compete clause that would prevent Northlands, the group that owns and operates Rexall Place, from hosting concerts and other events there if the Oilers were to move into a brand-new, proposed $450 million downtown arena. Perhaps he knew Rexall was on the verge of falling apart and they wouldn't be competing anyway?