The NHL lockout has been in effect for two months now, and so, with no actual games to report on, we’re going to link to a different hockey video every day until a new CBA is reached. Today: remembering Roller Hockey International.
Roller hockey had a moment in the nineties. Not only did it explode in popularity among kids, there was a professional league legitimate enough that it held many of its games in NHL arenas, with some matches televised nationally on ESPN 2. Founded in 1993 with twelve original teams, Roller Hockey International would last six seasons, with the St. Louis Vipers winning the league’s final championship in 1999, a year after the league took a one-season hiatus. (There were two teams in the New York metropolitan area: the Long Island Jawz, which played one season at the Nassau Coliseum, and the New Jersey Rockin Rollers, which called the Meadowlands home for four seasons.)
We’re not sure where this video came from — if you know, please tell us in the comments — but it’s some sort of primer about professional roller hockey. It’s also one of the most nineties things we’ve ever seen. It gets a little — okay, a lot — weird toward the end, and the thing about members of the team in Los Angeles building their own arena doesn’t sound quite right. (They played their home games at the Great Western Forum, after all.) But on this, Day 61 of the NHL lockout, let’s take a moment to remember the plastic pucks and blue playing surfaces of Roller Hockey International.