During the recent Tampa Bay Lightning game, unknown fans were seemingly afforded the opportunity to play Mario Kart utilizing the ice surface as a projection screen.

Sports and video games seem to go hand-in-hand with one another, and that’s not just because there are sport-based video games on the market. As any avid gamer/sporting aficionado can attest, there are few things better than squeezing a few minutes of a game in with friends during an intermission, and then switching back in time to cheer for the home team. A favorite for many that find themselves doing this is undoubtedly Mario Kart, but regardless of the title, the act of sneaking in a few matches during breaks in the big game can quickly become tradition.

So, imagine the sheer distraught that arises for those that decide to attend an actual game. Aside from the over-priced hotdogs and memorabilia, there’s not all that much available to help pass the time. Fortunately, the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning have come up with a rather ingenious solution that involves, not only the aforementioned Mario Kart, but turning the actual ice surface into a screen. Better yet, the club recently utilized this option during its latest matchup against the Pittsburgh Penguins at its hometown Amalie Arena.

One impressed hockey journalist, Seth Rorabaugh, managed to catch some of the larger than life Mario Kart session on video and he then proceeded to share it on Twitter. Those hoping to catch a glimpse of the game in action can do so below.

Allegedly, people within the crowd were afforded the opportunity to put the digital pedal to the metal during intermissions, but fans will be quick to point out that this is clearly a modded version of the original Super Mario Kart. This is immediately obvious because the Lightning’s mascot, aptly named ThunderBug, has been added as a playable racer, while it would seem that the Penguin’s mascot, referred to as Iceburgh, has also been given a guest role. While Kart purists are sure to lose their heads over such inclusions, much like some did when it was revealed that Link would join the roster of Mario Kart 8, it still makes for a fun little demo for hockey fans.

While this mod is certainly innovative, there have been many other fan-made renditions lately that also put a unique spin on the Mario Kart franchise. Two immediate examples that come to mind are a Mario Kart meets Star Wars mashup and the rather nostalgic 101-Player Mario Kart – the latter of which features a medley of mascots from throughout gaming history.

Regardless of how fans of the series choose to show their enthusiasm, here’s hoping that Tampa had the rights to utilize Mario and friends in such a fun-filled capacity.

Source: Seth Rorabaugh – Twitter