Despite all of his efforts to the contrary, Maineiacs’ head coach and GM Clem Jodoin finally did, in fact, let an excuse fly after Tuesday’s loss to the St. John’s Fog Devils.

And he nearly laughed while talking about it.

Apparently, the food service cart at the Montreal Airport from which the team flew Monday night on its way to New Foundland was being piloted by a new driver – or one that couldn’t see straight.

According to Jodoin and team radio announcer Jeff Mannix, the car plowed through the door to the plane while trying to off-load.

The flight, which was supposed to take off at 8:55 p.m. Eastern time, was grounded. All passengers – including the team, its staff and all of the equipment – had to be emptied into another plane.

The delay lasted more than one hour, and the plane finally took off at 10:35 p.m. Eastern time. It arrived in St. John’s at 2 a.m. local time, and the team managed to make it to its hotel by 3.

Talk about bad food service.

No word yet on whether anyone left a tip.

Gili the ham

Forward Stefano Giliati has a funny way of, well, being funny. The Maineiacs’ 19-year-old skater, after the team’s 7-6 win over Baie-Comeau on Sunday, thought it would be funny to start spreading trade rumors – in his own locker room.

After he got out of the shower, he started casually walking through the dressing room and into the weight room. He’d tap a player on the shoulder and say (for example), “Hey Taylor, Coach wants to see you in his office. You’re being traded.”

This happened for nearly five minutes, and he went to about seven or eight different players.

It may have worked on a few of them, if Giliati had been able to keep a straight face at all.

Future star

Kevin Marshall will join 39 other Canadian Hockey League players at the CHL Top Prospects game this week. Marshall, the lone Lewiston skater selected, will be among 11 players from the QMJHL on the ice at the annual showcase of the top first-year-draft-eligible players.

The game is on the 17th in Quebec City, and should allow for Marshall to participate without missing any time with the Maineiacs.

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