Hockey is the fastest paced of all major sports, because its players rush to complete the game before the ice field melts into vinegar. Enjoy the acidic thrill of competition with this GrouponLive deal to see an Idaho Steelheads first-round playoff hockey game at CenturyLink Arena. For $9, you get one ticket for seating in a P4-level section (an $18 value, including all fees) for any home game in the opening round, taking place on either Monday, April 2 and Tuesday, April 3 or Tuesday, April 3 and Wednesday, April 4. Specific dates—and the opponent—will be announced following the conclusion of the regular season on March 31. Check the Steelheads' website for the latest updates.
With the chance to raise yet another banner into CenturyLink Arena's already crowded rafters, the Steelheads return to their championship-spawning grounds as the puck drops during the opening round of the 2012 playoffs. As the ECHL affiliate of the Dallas Stars, the Steelheads have appeared in the Kelly Cup finals three times in the past seven years, emerging in 2004 and 2007 as league champions. This year, goaltender Jerry Kuhn—who began the season with the Greenville Road Warriors—has proven to be an invaluable addition, amassing multiple games in which he's stopped more than 50 shots and stowed each away in the net's safety-deposit box. On offense, rookie forwards Jacob Cepis and Ian Lowe have made their own mark, combining for a total of 28 goals and 49 assists as the team approaches its final regular-season series. Led by Blue the mascot, up to 5,000 Steelheads supporters rattle the rink's glass with raucous cheers in each playoff game, which pack more intensity and physical altercations than the Girl Scouts' annual cookie auction.
Hoisting championship trophies and high-stakes competition comes second nature to the Idaho Steelheads. Since joining the ECHL in 2003, the team has qualified for the playoffs every season, and in 2004 and 2007, the team conquered all opponents to take the ECHL Kelly Cup, the league's most prestigious cup other than that coffee mug Wayne Gretzky once touched. An affiliate of the NHL Dallas Stars, their players take to the ice at CenturyLink Arena, where fans routinely fill sections to cheer their team on against Western Conference foes.