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Beer league hockey

With my team sadly vanquished in the first round of our beer league playoffs, I swung by the rink for the division championship game. It would have been more fun to play so I distracted myself by running my relatively new Nikon Df through the paces.

Not ideal conditions. The rink (like most rinks) is a little on the dark side and hockey is a wickedly fast sport, even played at my level (for the record, I suck but I occasionally make a play and hockey is a great prelude to drinking beer with friends). I was also shooting through smudgy glass with a sharp but slooooow lens, my Nikon 70-300mm telephoto.

Most of the above shots were taken at ISO 2000 or 2500 with a range of shutter speeds from 1/640 to much faster and apertures ranging between f/4.5, f/5.3 and f/5.6.

The result: the camera, as expected, performed a tad better than my D5100, but the images still had a lot of noise. In hindsight, I would have been better served lowering the ISO, shooting at slower shutter speeds -- or not being such a cheapskate and renting a faster lens such as the 70-200mm 2.8.

Putting aside the technical crap, the top photo is my favorite of the bunch. It just has the look and feel of a beer league game, even though we see only one player for the red team. I also like the photo taken right before the faceoff -- the photo really gives you a sense of the concentration involved. 

As per usual, I tried some different things in processing and cropped a few of the pics from 2:3 format to 4:5. 

More pics from the game here

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The above images are ©Steve Hymon and may not be used or reproduced elsewhere without my advanced written permission. All rights reserved.