By Kelly Werthmann
DENVER (CBS4) – For Chicago, it was the accountant.
For Colorado, it’s a plumbing estimator.
Lyric Black checks out sewer and water lines by day, but Friday night he was the emergency backup goalie for the Avalanche.
“It’s just such an honor to be chosen for that,” Black told CBS4’s Kelly Werthmann.
Black – a 39-year-old father of three – is one of a handful of backup goaltenders for the Avalanche, thanks to a new NHL rule.
“Basically you have an emergency backup goalie that can dress for either team,” he explained.
Several nights a week, Black protects the net for a few adult leagues in the metro area, like those at the Westminster Promenade. Hockey is a sport, he says, he has loved since he was a kid.
“I would usually skip school just to play hockey all day,” Black said with a laugh.
For the sixth time this season, Black sat in the stands next to his wife, waiting eagerly for the call to play.
“You watch every goal, each goalie, watching their movements,” Black said. “You don’t want them to get hurt, but you kind of want to get in there. I’m checking my phone every five minutes to see if I have a message from the Avalanche organization that says, ‘we need you to get dressed.’”
Black has yet to hit the Pepsi Center ice. But if he does get a shot, his goal is to be like the Blackhawks’ backup.
“I’ve watched [the highlights] a lot and I’ve been like, ‘I can do that.’ I feel like if I was put in that same position I’d be able to do the same thing, not to take anything away from [Scott Foster], he did a phenomenal job.”
Black did not get called up to play for the Avalanche or the Blackhawks Friday night. Even if he never gets another chance to fill in, he said he’s just happy to be a small part of the league.
“I’m pretty proud to be here,” he said.
Kelly Werthmann joined the CBS4 team as the morning reporter in 2012. After serving as weekend morning anchor, Kelly is now Covering Colorado First for CBS4 News at 10. Connect with Kelly on Facebook or follow her on Twitter @KellyCBS4.