10 Things You Need to Create the Perfect NHL Man Cave
With only a month before the start of the next NHL season, all the fans around the country are preparing for yet another exciting year.
As the ways of technology and entertainment are continuing to evolve, the fan experience for the sport is becoming unreal.
It has gotten to the point where if you do not have an HDTV to watch the games, then you are desperately under the curve of being a hockey fan.
Now we have come to the age where every man needs to have himself a man cave. A sanctuary where men can be men and have control over what they want to watch without hurting anyone's feelings.
Whether it's through your own design or through a professional designer, whatever you want to be in the room will be there because this is created through your imagination.
As much creativity that is required to create the ultimate man cave, here are 10 must-haves for every hockey fan.
An HD Television
Like I said in the opening slide, the television is what makes or breaks a man cave.
Whether it's LCD, LED or 3D, the choice is yours on what will act as the canvas for the masterpiece that is the NHL.
When it comes to choosing the right TV, it seems like it's not about what brand to choose, but what size.
The bigger the better when it comes to shopping for what will go in your man cave, and it's go big or go home.
NHL Center Ice
What is a huge television with the ultimate hockey package.
NHL Center Ice takes the fan experience past their local sports team. It gives fans the opportunity to watch every team and every game going on, including watching multiple games at once.
This comes in handy for those fans who are not able to watch their teams because they are not close to where they are located.
A Flyers fan in Los Angeles, or a Sharks fan that lives in Boston, or a Blue Jackets fan that resides in Florida, like myself.
For one flat rate, or a monthly payment, you can have NHL coverage for the entire season and won't miss a second of action.
If you live close to your favorite team, then consider yourself lucky. If your one of the unlucky ones like myself, then Center Ice is the way to go.
Comfy Sports Chair
In any home, a person always has their favorite place to sit and relax. Whether that be a chair, couch or even a bean bag chair, I can't feel comfortable unless I am an in my favorite spot.
Whatever piece of furniture you choose, make sure that is has the essentials, which include:
1) A Cup Holder: You need one hand to hold the remote and the other to hold your lucky puck. If you had three hands, then they wouldn't have created cup holders.
2) The ability to recline: You try and sit upright after stuffing your face full of chips and wings. Enough said.
3) The "O" factor: No, I am not talking about the "O face" from the movie Office Space, I am talking about when you come home from a long day at the office, take a seat and feel all of your aches, pains and problems disappear.
4) Speakers: Now, not every chair requires these, but if you can get one, then you will not be sorry. What a luxury it is to hear bone-crushing hits so close you think you're right next to them.
A Fat Head
You've got your TV, your Center Ice, as well as your furniture, now it's time to fill up the wall space.
What better way then with a life-size Fathead.
The brand is becoming one of the most popular decorations for the ultimate sports fan.
Not only are they worth the purchase, but they are easy to put up and unlike posters, do not require tape or other sticky material to hang up.
When you need to move a poster, trying to get it down without damaging it or bringing some of the wallpaper with it is unlikely.
With a Fathead, it is a quick and easy pull off of the wall and then you just move it to its next location.
Fathead has expanded their stock to include not only players, but stadiums, arenas and classic moments as well.
A Boston Bruins fan can now celebrate their Stanley Cup victory for quite some time with a Fathead of captain Zdeno Chara hoisting the cup.
As awesome as Fatheads are, they cannot fill up your entire wall.
OK, well they can, but you have to mix it up a bit.
Another option is the numerous amounts of sports memorabilia that is available these days.
Pictured above is a signed and framed Wayne Gretzky jersey, which is one way to go.
Jerseys are not the only thing that can be framed, as you will see a lot of panoramic pictures taken of famous sports arenas and sporting events around the league.
Whether it's the winning of the Stanley Cup or the dropping of the puck in a team's first inaugural season, there are pictures taken of almost every event these days.
Other options include pennants, championship banners, clocks, wood signs and scoreboards.
No sports experience can be without cold beverages.
And unless you like you beverages warm and nasty, you will need a fridge.
A mini-fridge is the way to go. With a mini-fridge, you won't have to run up to the kitchen every time you need a refill.
All you need to do is lean over the arm of your chair and open up a fresh one.
A fridge can also come in handy for keeping your leftovers fresh.
If you can't finish your sub or your wings before the end of the first period, just throw them in the fridge, wait until the start of the third and go in for a second helping.
After the wings and pizza are gone, you may still be hungry and may have to resort to frozen food.
That is why a microwave is essential in any man cave.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to what second meal food you can choose.
You could do popcorn, pizza bites, hot dogs, nachos or, if you want to stay on the healthy side, a lean pocket.
And don't forget to finish the meal with some Tums because you're going to need it if you eat off of my menu.
Air Hockey Table
Your favorite team off for the night?
The other games around the league boring?
Not to worry, put the game into your own hands with an air hockey table.
Air hockey tables may be a thing of the past, but they can still be a lot of fun.
I had an air hockey table back when I was young and whenever my brother and I watched Sunday afternoon hockey on Fox where the biggest innovation was a glowing puck (o the good old days), we would always get a game going towards the end of the game.
You can always make air hockey more interesting by holding tournaments with your friends, battling it out to see who the top player is.
Pictured in this slide is a puck that my brother had Boston Bruins Patrice Bergeron sign right around the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
As the playoffs got underway, whenever my brother had the puck around, the Bruins won.
He made sure that in the next series against the Philadelphia Flyers, he had the puck around during every game.
The Bruins went on to sweep the Flyers in four games and claimed revenge from last year's heartbreak when the Bruins lost a 3-0 series lead and watched the Broad Street Bullies move on to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Almost every sports fan around the world has a superstition that they must follow or have with them during every game to try and keep the luck with their team.
Whether it's a lucky puck, jersey or a specific ritual, your man cave should be the location of this superstition.
All Your Buddies
There is no point to having a man cave if you cannot share it with your best buddies.
If all you have is a big-screen TV, a comfy chair and other appliances with no one to share it with, it's kind of pathetic.
Nothing like getting all of your friends together for a day of hockey, food and even some air hockey in between games.
However, make sure you check the schedule before inviting certain friends.
If your favorite team is playing that of a friend's, maybe forget to call him that week.
Regardless of who wins the game, one of you is going to be upset, and nothing stinks more than when a friend rubs it in your face that your team lost, especially if your teams hate each other.
I invited a friend over to watch the Jackets take on the Detroit Red Wings one night and of course, the better team was victorious. After the game ended, I didn't hear the end of it until several weeks down the line.
If you are willing to risk hearing some smack talk, by all means, go ahead, as it is glorious if you are on the winning side.