On Wednesday, the Carolina Hurricanes held their annual Media Golf Tournament and yours truly was fortunate enough to attend this year. When I first arrived, I found out that I would be paired up with the Hall of Fame voice of the Hurricanes, radio play-by-play man, Chuck Kaiton.
After we hopped in our cart to make our way to our designated starting hole, I knew I was going to be in for some "classic Kaiton" as he lit up a stogie and puffed away during our short trip. Never at a loss for words, he also guided the other pairing of our foursome, defensive coach Tommy Rowe and forward Tom Kostopoulos, to our beginning point.
Kaiton plays golf much like he calls a game, with a no-nonsense and deliberate approach. He rarely took a practice swing as he addressed each ball and had a keen memory of each hole from his previous experiences on the course. We exchanged small talk about a variety of subjects throughout the day and it was not surprising to hear that the announcer was just as excited about the coming season as most fans are.
It was a pleasure to spend the time with Chuck and something I won't soon forget.
I consider myself to be a novice at golf, I hit my share of bad shots, and some good shots, (or what I used to consider to be good shots), but I never played with professional athletes before. Needless to say, it was an eye-opener. "TK" and Tommy Rowe crushed the ball all day long and did their best to hold up our team, but Jim Rutherford's foursome won the tournament, (again).
After lunch we had the opportunity to interview the general manager, head coach, and several players. I'll be publishing those interviews here as soon as I have the opportunity to transcribe them. There is some interesting information coming up and a lot of optimism from everyone in the organization.
It's going to be a very interesting year!