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South Boston street hockey comes alive in film

Posted by Patrick Rosso  October 12, 2012 02:21 PM

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(Video courtesy Danny Picard)


Danny Picard's movie, “363: The Road to the Southie 3-on-3”


South Boston is once again home to another YouTube sensation and no, it’s not “The Real Housewives of South Boston.”

Danny Picard, a 29-year-old South Boston native, and his movie “363: The Road to the Southie 3-on-3” has been taking the Internet by storm, getting more than 8,000 page views since it was posted in early October.

“The goal was to let people know who we are,” said Picard, who writes for Comcast SportsNet New England and hosts a web-based sports-talk show.

The film, developed by Picard and Peter Needham, a life-long friend of Picard’s and his goalie in the tournament, details the trials and tribulations of the annual neighborhood street hockey tournament.

Following Picard, the film documents the months and the events leading up to the annual 3-on-3 street hockey tournament, held every summer at the Farragut Park court.

“We wanted to display the overall sentiment of street hockey in Southie,” said Picard, who held his first hockey stick at age 5. “It’s a hard game and we love it.”

Detailing everything from the training to the personalities on the court, the film gives the audience a birds-eye view of life in the neighborhood and the importance of a game that generations grew up playing.

“We started playing this game early, and it’s never stopped,” said Picard. “It was a way for us to get out of the rink for the summer; it was just something we always did.”

While the film has its humor and moments that at times seem scripted, Picard said the majority is natural and realistically reflects the sport and its players.

Dorchester’s Jimmy Hayes and Milton’s Keith Yandle, players in the NHL, even make their own appearances, talking about the game and what it was like growing up watching kids from the other neighborhoods show off their stuff.

“We all kind of grew up in this hockey community together,” said Picard, who attended Boston College High School and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. “There were the Dorchester kids, the Southie kids, the Charlestown kids and even the East Boston kids, but we all played together. When you get in that court it’s only about street hockey and that’s real.”

Stars aside, the film manages to capture a slice of life in South Boston that can only be found in the square rink at Farragut Park, with its wooden boards and chain link fence.

“This is the sport we love and it brings everyone together,” Picard said. “We just love throwing on the Roller Blades and battling.”

The film suggests that 2012’s tournament may have been Picard’s last, but with a disappointing performance and the injury of Needham, causing Picard to draft Southie native Sean Regan to play goalie, he may be back next year looking to claim the title.

“We thought we were going to win it this year and that’s how we shot the movie,” said Picard, “But asking me now, I think I probably will be back next year, but that’s a long ways away.”

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Email Patrick D. Rosso, patrick.d.rosso@gmail.com. Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.

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