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Maxim Afinogenov Drops in for Some Pickup Hockey

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A really enjoyable story about "Mad Max" skating in Birmingham Alabama this week. I love this opening paragraph:

The first name on the sign-in sheet for Tuesday night's adult pick-up hockey at the Pelham Ice Rink had to be a joke, right? "What idiot signed in as Maxim Afinogenov?" the next guy in line wanted to know. Turns out, the "idiot" actually was Afinogenov, the 30-year-old right-winger for the NHL Atlanta Thrashers, three-time Russian Olympian, and seven-time member of the Russian National Team that is competing in the IIHF World Championships next month in Germany.

Every wonder how NHL conditioning compares to recreational league conditioning?

"Of the 29 goals, Maxim scored 17, including the last three after it was tied, 13-13," Cheeseman said. "And he didn't come off the ice in either the second or third periods. He told us he was looking for conditioning. And besides, who was going to tell him to come off?"

It sounds like Max and the local guys enjoyed themselves. Here's the full story.