Stones boot the Hitmen

CAMERON MAXWELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 12:45 PM ET

Thanks to last night's Rolling Stones concert, the Calgary Hitmen had to pack up and move shop yesterday.

In fact, none of the Hitmen players or coaches were allowed downstairs at the Saddledome because of strict Stones' security measures, so the club practised at Centennial Arenas ahead of tonight's contest against Moose Jaw (Saddledome, 7 p.m.).

That was bad news for Hitmen assistant coach Dave Lowry, a huge Rolling Stones fan, who had zero chance of getting a stick autographed by Mick Jagger or Keith Richards thanks to the security lockdown.

"That's why I was going to sleep in the office Thursday night, so I wouldn't have to sneak in. I'd already be in there," said Lowry, who has seen the Stones twice, with a laugh.

"I love them but I've got to go to my kid's hockey game. Priorities, right? But I might sneak in later and try to catch the encore."

As for the Hitmen players, the Stones rolling into town is more of an inconvenience than anything else.

They lugged their equipment to the rink yesterday and have to haul it back to the Saddledome today before the game, as well as do their own laundry.

Centreman Ryan White said his billets didn't appreciate that too much.

"We had to take everything home and my billets weren't too happy. The downstairs didn't smell too good Thursday night," said White, 17, who has 11 points in 14 games.

Like many of his teammates, White doesn't listen to the Rolling Stones. Classic tracks like Gimme Shelter, Tumbling Dice and Heartbreaker have yet to find their way onto his car stereo or MP3 player.

"I think I'd know a Stones song if I heard one but I can't name any off the top of my head," said White, a country fan.

Even a vet like Darryl Moscaluk -- DJ Mosc -- to his teammates, is at a bit of a loss when it comes to rock and roll's original bad boys.

"I like that Paint it Black, or whatever it's called. We don't have any Stones music that we listen to but we're new-age kids and they're old," said the 20-year-old.

Riley Merkley is a big music fan and fared a little better when it comes to basic Stones trivia.

"I know Keith Richards is in the band," said Merkley, when asked to name a band member and a song. "A Rolling Stones song? That stuff's too old for me, man. What about that one about the Devil?"

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HIT PARADE: The Hitmen (10-4-0-0) face a tough test against Moose Jaw tonight, which was 8-2-1-1 prior to last night.


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