Hurricane Sandy has blitzed the East Coast, and it’s effects are still being felt all along the eastern seaboard. Sports are feeling the effects of the “Frankenstorm” as well, with the Nets home opener in Brooklyn being postponed and numerous other events cancelled. The Pittsburgh Steelers didn’t have their bout with the Giants cancelled or postponed, rather they just have no place to stay in New York to prepare for the game.
Due to the flooding and the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the Steelers were unable to find a hotel and therefore must fly into New York hours before game time. Rather than go to a hotel, which is usually what happens the night before, the Steelers will go straight from the airport to MetLife Stadium with very little time in between landing and kickoff to prepare.
Lucky for the Steelers, their game against the Giants is a marquee one meaning kickoff won’t be until 4:25pm ET. That gives the team enough time to fly in from Pitsburgh, land at the airport, run over to a hotel with power by said airport, eat a meal and then get bused to MetLife in time for kickoff.
However, the Steelers aren’t asking anyone to play a sad violin song for them. A senior official from the team said the situation the team is in is nothing compared to what residents of New York and New Jersey are dealing with at the moment.
“There are a lot of very difficult things going on for a lot of people in that area.” the official said. “Us having to fly in and out on the same day as a football game is no hardship in comparison.”
The game is a must-win for the Steelers, who are quickly slipping behind in a fierce NFC North division and a tough conference in general. The inconvenience of the situation is unfortunate, but as the old saying goes, we’re talking about professionals here and not being able to sleep at a hotel shouldn’t be the difference between a hard fought game and a sloppy one.
It’s not like the Steelers are flying in from the West Coast either, and at the very least it can be a throwback to the old high school football days where you traveled to a game the day of. Although it’s not an excuse now, if the Steelers struggle on Sunday, don’t be surprised to hear some belly-aching about the rough 300 mile plane ride that drained the team.