Hockey Challenge takes place Saturday, February 15, at accesso ShoWare Center
KENT, February 4, 2020 — The Seattle Thunderbirds and Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Western Washington & Alaska (RMHC) are pleased to announce the schedule of games and activities at Hockey Challenge 2020 on Saturday, February 15, at accesso ShoWare Center in Kent.
The T-Birds play the Vancouver Giants at 6:05 pm on Saturday, February 15, in a game that will be followed by the local Celebrity and T-Birds Alumni All-Star Game.
The All-Star game will feature Team Olczyk vs. Team Patterson.
Former T-Birds, including Jamie Huscroft, Danny Lorenz, Lloyd Shaw, Jim McTaggart, and Ed Sprague will be divided up among Team Olczyk and Team Patterson. Former Tacoma Rocket Jamie Butt and former professional hockey players Tavis Hansen and Doug Kirton, who is the Sno-King Hockey Director, will also play in the All-Star game.
A late addition to the All-Star Game is Roger Bruggen-Cate, the uncle of T-Birds captain Conner Brugge-Cate, who will play for Team Olczyk.
View All-Star Team Rosters (PDF)
Team Olczyk will be coached by NHL Seattle assistant general manager Ricky Olczyk. Prior to joining NHL Seattle Olczyk was a professional scout for the Toronto Maple Leafs, an assistant general manager for the Carolina Hurricanes for four seasons and an assistant general manager for the Edmonton Oilers for six seasons.
Team Patterson will be captained by former T-Bird and NHL player Ed Patterson, who is the father of current T-Bird Max Patterson. Ed Patterson played two seasons of a five-season WHL career with the T-Birds and was selected by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1991 NHL Draft.’
There will be five Challenge games before the T-Birds vs. Giants game. This year the Challenge will feature a team from the NHL Seattle office that is named the “Seattle 32’s”. The 32’s roster will consist of current employees of the 32nd NHL franchise.
The 32’s will play Breakaway Crew in the first game of Hockey Challenge 2020. Breakaway Crew is a team comprised of players that took part in the fifth annual RMHC Breakaway Challenges on August 17, 2019, at Sno-King Arena Kirkland and January 11, 2020, at Kent Valley Ice Centre. The Breakaway Challenges pitted youth and adult skaters against players who have never played goalie. Each breakaway on a new goalie required a donation to RMHC. If a skater scored on a new goalie that skater received a free breakaway against an experienced goalie. If the experienced goalie gave up a goal, the goalie donated to RMHC. There was no limit to the number of breakaways a skater could take against a new goalie. At this year’s Breakaway Challenges, a Skills Competition was added that youth and adult skaters could participate in that also helped raise funds. Over $16,000 was raised for RMCH through the two Breakaway Challenges this season, bringing the five-year total to over $50,000 raised. The skaters and goalies who raised the most money for RMHC at the two Breakaway Challenges this season will have a final competition during the first intermission of the T-Birds game.
Single game tickets for Hockey Challenge are on sale online on the T-Birds website and at the accesso ShoWare Center box office. A ticket to Hockey Challenge 2020 gives fans access to all Challenge events on Saturday, February 15, including the local Celebrity and T-Birds Alumni Celebrity Game, all other Challenge games and the T-Birds game that night against the Giants. The Celebrity and T-Birds Alumni Game is scheduled to start as quickly as possible after the T-Birds game ends.
John Barr, the creator and manager of the grassroots “NHL to Seattle” group, is in his 16th year supporting RMHC. Barr is organizing the Challenge game between NHLtoSeattle Black vs. NHLtoSeattle White.
Molly Doner who lives in the area, is a hockey instructor and played four seasons with the University of Wisconsin Badgers returns for her second All-Star Game.
Ian Furness and Matt “Slickhawk” Mikolas from 950 KJR Sportsradio will be lending their support by hosting and emceeing the All-Star Game.
The Top Donors from the Hockey Challenge teams will be divided up evenly among Team Olczyk and Team Patterson.
This is the 22nd anniversary of the Hockey Challenge which began in 1998, when hockey-playing Microsoft employees, with the help of the Thunderbirds, took an in-house rivalry public and decided to raise money for the RMHC. Since inception, the Challenge has raised more than $6.4 million for RMHC, which provides a “home-away-from-home” for children and their families during medical treatment, making each day a little easier.
Hockey Challenge 2020 Schedule
Saturday, February 15
Game 1 – Game 1, Seattle 32’s vs. Breakaway Crew, 8:35am
Game 2 – Game 2, Katie’s Krushers vs. Manny’s Mayhem, 10:15am
Game 3 – Game 3, Developer Relations vs. X Box Live, 11:55am
Game 4 – Game 4, Azure vs. Microsoft 365, 1:35pm
Game 5 – Game 5, NHLtoSeattle Black vs. NHLtoSeattle White, 3:15pm
Game 6 – Seattle Thunderbirds vs. Vancouver Giants, 6:05 p.m.
Game 7 – Celebrity and T-Birds Alumni All-Star Game, immediately following T-Birds/Giants game.