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ON THE MARK-December 10th

Wednesday, December 10th
ON THE MARK-December 10th

“On the ‘Mark’” returns for another installment, processing the thoughts inside the head of Mark Binetti, “Voice of the Rush”. In today’s article, Mark talks about birthdays, streaks, travel, and the holidays:

1) Yesterday, as most of you Rush fans politely knew, was my 27th birthday. I’m overwhelmed by the birthday wishes I received and thank you all so much for saying so, especially at the “Rush Hour” last night at Boston’s. I’m pretty sure 27 means I’m 50 in broadcaster’s years, but nonetheless I’m blessed to have celebrated a great birthday yesterday.

2) One of the coolest parts about my birthday yesterday was how the Rush front office staff wrapped my cubicle in birthday paper, and put at least 15 balloons all over my desk with streamers and the whole nine yards. On top of that display of affection, as well as the hilarious birthday card I received, I was given the gift of mechanical clicky pencils. For those that don’t know, I’m the only person in the office that hasn’t sent the pencil into technological obscurity, and yes…I get made fun of for it for whatever reason.

3) It was so great to see the Rush get rewarded with a win last Friday night. The game was very well played by both sides, and like I mentioned in all of my broadcasts from this past weekend and leading up to last night’s “Rush Hour”, it was so great to see Coach Ferras get that “greasy” goal to win the game. Coach even said it himself that this team needs to score by committee and outwork the opponent in front of the net, and it was great to see the reward finally come to the team.

4) The eight-game skid was unfortunate, and the worst part about it was that for most of those eight games the Rush out-competed their opponent. When you total 132 shots to around 70-something of your opponent in a three-game set that speaks so much to the work ethic of the club getting the puck to the net and looking for either a rebound or a deflection in front, and that’s just a small sample size of the bigger picture.

5) When it comes to streaks, the most outrageous streak I ever witnessed was the absolute tear the Norfolk Admirals of the AHL went on. That was a team that at the time was still affiliated with the Tampa Bay Lightning, and had NHLers like Cory Conacher, Tyler Johnson, Radko Gudas, Ondrej Palat, Richard Panik…I could go on and on. Anyway, the Admirals hovered around .500 in the standings before winning the final 28 games of the regular season IN A ROW. That broke the AHL win streak of 17 games set by the 2004-05 Philadelphia Phantoms, and the 18 game winning streak (the professional hockey record) of the IHL’s Peoria Rivermen in 1991. And yes, the Admirals would win the Calder Cup championship, winning 15 of 18 playoff games, including back-to-back four-game sweeps in the Eastern Conference and Calder Cup Finals. My point is there is light at the end of the tunnel, and 52 games to go. As my roommate, Rush Athletic Trainer Cody Lindhorst constantly says: “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.”

6) Speaking of work ethic, it was such a breath of fresh air to see Justin Faryna come back into the lineup this past weekend. He is the true definition of a warrior in this great sport. A consummate pro, an outstanding gentleman, and a firecracker on the ice, Justin brought so much energy to the team, and it was amazing to see how much one player and his positive attitude can galvanize a team. I said on the air that you can’t coach heart and that Justin has plenty of it, but Coach takes the cake with what he had to say about Justin himself: “Justin works so hard out on the ice that he forces his own teammates to either get on his level or supersede his own compete level”. Well and generously spoken.

7) My parents and my younger brother came out and visited Rapid City for Thanksgiving, and I want to thank all of you that interacted with them for being gracious to my family as they came to celebrate the holiday. I was so thankful they not only came out here, but had an absolute blast doing so for the week that they stayed. Of course, the week went by way too fast, but when your family lives 1700 miles away you’ll take whatever time you can get. The holiday was outstanding, my mother’s cooking was off the charts (as always), and overall it was a great time.

8) Speaking of which, I cannot wait to return the favor when I go home for Christmas in two weeks. I’ll be leaving Wichita and staying in Charlotte for a brief moment before I fly out on Christmas Day for the second year in a row to get back to work. Like I said, you take the time you can get when you get it with family for moments like this.

9) The travel involved for this upcoming stretch of road games is BRUTAL. We leave tonight for Missouri, play them Friday, immediately head to Wichita following that, play them Saturday, then come back here for a Tuesday night showdown with the Mavericks, then leave the next night for Tulsa, play them Friday, head to Missouri again and play them Saturday, and then head to Wichita and play them Sunday. When I think of that, this is the only thing I can process: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozYg8vDTmkc

10) With that being said, this weekend will be very tough for sure. Missouri has changed their lineup a decent bit since our last meeting on November 8th, but to the credit of Coach Ferras, so has his team, presenting challenges of their own against the Mavericks. In order to win this weekend against the Mavs and the Thunder, I think it will come down to what Coach Ferras says is what made such an impact last week against Quad City: be physical. No fly-bys on the ice, as he says, if you see a guy bump him and let him know it’s going to take more work than that to get by you on the ice. Both games will be on 100.3 The FOX with pregame starting at 5:35 p.m. MST, and puck drop following at 6:05 p.m. both nights.

11) I will be joined in the booth on Friday night by Rush Captain Jesse Schultz. I asked him knowing that this would be most likely the only chance I’d ever get to call a game with him, and I am very appreciative at how generous he is being by lending his talents for Friday night’s call. I seriously can’t wait to get in the booth with him and call the action for all of you, because I know it’s going to be such a great night for the two of us.

Upcoming Home Games

Full Schedule
Savannah Ghost Pirates @ Rapid City Rush
Wednesday, February 28th
Savannah Ghost Pirates @ Rapid City Rush
Puck Drops:
7:05 PM MST
The Monument
Savannah Ghost Pirates
SAV Savannah Ghost Pirates
at
Rapid City Rush
RC Rapid City Rush
The Monument
WEATHER PERMITTING NIGHT
Friday, March 1st
WEATHER PERMITTING NIGHT
Puck Drops:
7:05 PM MST
The Monument
Savannah Ghost Pirates
SAV Savannah Ghost Pirates
at
Rapid City Rush
RC Rapid City Rush
The Monument
JURASSIC WORLD NIGHT
Saturday, March 2nd
JURASSIC WORLD NIGHT
Puck Drops:
7:05 PM MST
The Monument
Savannah Ghost Pirates
SAV Savannah Ghost Pirates
at
Rapid City Rush
RC Rapid City Rush
The Monument

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