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Backyard Rink has Palmieri Ready for Dodger Stadium

Tuesday, 12.24.2013 / 2:53 PM / News
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Backyard Rink has Palmieri Ready for Dodger Stadium
Anaheim Ducks forward Kyle Palmieri recalls youth of playing in his backyard as Stadium Series in Los Angeles approaches.
By NHL.com

Growing up in Montvale, N.J., Anaheim Ducks forward Kyle Palmieri had one of the coolest dads on the block.

Bruce Palmieri works in construction, and when he noticed his oldest son developing into one of the more talented players in the state, he decided to apply his skills to the cause by building a backyard rink.

"I started playing when I was 5 or 6 [years old]," Kyle Palmieri said. "When I started to like it and commit to it and play it every day, he saw an opportunity to give himself another hobby during the winter. He takes real good care of it. He takes it seriously."

Bruce Palmieri still puts up the ankle-high boards and floods the backyard every winter, and Kyle said he plans on skating a few laps with his younger brother, two older sisters and other friends and family members during the League's Christmas break if the weather cooperates. With the Ducks finishing a long road trip at the Washington Capitals on Monday, Palmieri will be able to spend part of the NHL's three-day holiday break at home.

When he lived at home full-time, Palmieri and his friends certainly got lots of use out of the backyard ice, jumping on at any opportunity.

"I'd go out there before practice, after practice, before school," he said. "Any chance I got.

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"I definitely was one of the only kids in New Jersey to have one. It was pretty cool. My dad's a builder, so he knew what he was doing. It was a pretty nice thing to have. ... We had the lights. He did a great job. It's still up there now. It's a pretty cool place."

Palmieri will have another pretty cool place to play outside this season. His Ducks will play the Los Angeles Kings at Dodger Stadium on Jan. 25 (9:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN) as part of the 2014 Coors Light Stadium Series.

"It'll be a little different playing in Southern California," Palmieri said. "The temperatures in New Jersey in the winter getting below freezing is what you'd expect for pond hockey. Going out there, 65, 55 degrees and palm trees surrounding you, it'll be pretty weird, but pretty exciting."

Palmieri said he's talked to friends around the League who have taken part in outdoor games at all different levels, asking them for advice on what to expect. However, none of them have played an outdoor game in the kind of setting the Kings and Ducks will experience at the famed baseball stadium.

"I don't think we're going to need the stocking caps and stuff like that to keep us warm," Palmieri said. "I'm going to go out on a limb and say there won't be any snow falling on the ice. It'll be a little different than anyone else's experience."

The uniqueness of the first West Coast regular-season NHL outdoor game is what makes it that much more fun.

"I think it's a pretty big honor we have to have that first outdoor game in a climate like that," Palmieri said. "It'll be a different experience. I think everyone's really looking forward to it."

Author: Adam Kimelman | NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 66 42 17 7 196 179 91
2 NSH 66 41 18 7 196 162 89
3 STL 64 40 19 5 198 162 85
4 CHI 64 38 21 5 188 152 81
5 MIN 65 36 22 7 184 165 79
6 VAN 64 36 24 4 184 176 76
7 CGY 65 36 25 4 187 167 76
8 WPG 65 32 21 12 180 175 76
9 LAK 64 31 21 12 175 167 74
10 SJS 65 32 25 8 185 183 72
11 DAL 65 29 26 10 203 215 68
12 COL 64 28 25 11 170 183 67
13 ARI 65 21 37 7 142 220 49
14 EDM 64 18 36 10 145 213 46

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 63 20 41 13 61
C. Perry 51 27 18 15 45
R. Kesler 66 17 24 1 41
S. Vatanen 57 12 22 6 34
M. Beleskey 56 21 9 13 30
J. Silfverberg 65 10 20 11 30
H. Lindholm 63 6 23 20 29
P. Maroon 58 7 21 -4 28
C. Fowler 65 6 22 3 28
R. Rakell 55 6 19 5 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 30 8 5 .917 2.34
J. Gibson 9 5 0 .924 2.41

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