By Buddy Pinkston
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
November 23, 2004
DULUTH, Ga. – Skip the turkey, hold the dressing and bag the pumpkin pie. The Gwinnett Gladiators have Stingray on their Thanksgiving menu.
The ECHL’s South Carolina franchise visits Gwinnett Arena at 7:05 p.m. Thursday. That eliminates any chance for the players to stuff themselves in holiday fashion.
“I don’t think a turkey dinner would be much good on game day,” said rookie forward Brett Engelhardt of Sheboygan, Wis.
Few of his teammates follow the American tradition anyway. The Gladiators’ 13 Canadians gave their ritual thanks last month.
Even the team’s U.S. natives have gotten used to the idea of hockey as their main course this time of year.
“I think I’ve been home for Thanksgiving one time in the last five or six years,” said Engelhardt, who played two junior seasons with Green Bay of the United States Hockey League and four years at Michigan Tech.
While life away from Mom’s dinner table is nothing new to Engelhardt, AA hockey calls for other adjustments.