Every now and then, you’re scrolling through your Twitter feed when something stops you in your tracks.In 2020, that something has usually been whatever horrible news has occurred on a given day or whatever viral video has been ported over from TikTok.
The other day, however, I was stopped by something truly remarkable, in a good way: Trent Buhler’s recreated Boston Garden.
Buhler is a table hockey aficionado and decided to bring the old Garden back to life in table hockey format.
Words like “amazing,” “incredible,” and “unbelievable” are overused on the internet, but this work of art is worthy of being called all three.
Buhler is a Bruins fan from Edmonton, who sadly never managed to make it to a game at the original Boston Garden.
For him, it’s been a true passion project.
“I started this two years ago, with nothing more then an idea, zero plans to work from,” he said. “I scoured the web for pics and old game footage for reference and just went for it.”
Given the fact that Buhler had no plans and no in-person memories to draw upon, the amount of detail in his model is truly astounding.
I only made it to a game or two at the old Garden, and being a kid at the time, the memories are a little fuzzy. But the colors, the cramped, overhanging stands, the advertisements, the scoreboards...everything hits home.
“I’ve always loved the old buildings and saw games at the Montreal Forum and Maple Leaf Gardens, but sadly never made it to Boston until [the Boston Garden] was gone,” he said. “What inspired me is the fact that those buildings were a part of the teams back then: the yellow color of Boston Garden with the smaller ice surface, the blue kickplates on the boards of the Forum, fans having to go through the Leafs bench to get to their seat, stuff like that.”
For Buhler, part of the fun of his model is the call-back to a bygone era.
“When I watch a game on TV now, it all looks identical,” he said. “The charm just isn’t there...but l guess everyone gets a cup holder now.”
Buhler really nailed just about every aspect of the old Garden here (if he really wanted to make it authentic, he could pour a few cans of Miller Lite over the floors too).
The board ads are fantastic throwbacks. The “To Arena” sign with the fluorescent lights, the BayBank ad, the old logo at center ice...it’s perfect.
He even included one of the famous “obstructed view” seats!
While this may look like a work of art to me (it is), Buhler says he’s still got plenty more he wants to do.
“I have learned a ton building this game,” he said. “I plan to do others, although I still have a ways to go before this one is done.”
For those who are curious, yes, it’s a fully functioning game of table hockey too. However, hockey fights aren’t included.
Check out Buhler’s walk-thru video of his Boston Garden below:
Thanks to Trent for sharing his story and for allowing us to share his photos/video!