With the World Hockey Championships coming to a close and Canada’s second straight year without a medal Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson needs to look himself in the mirror…. but not because of the poor results.. because of the comments he made a few days ago regarding their lack of success…..
” Unacceptable, totally unacceptable,” said Nicholson. “Everyone has to find a way to be better.”
I guess my first question is what are your expectations Bob? Because based on the rosters you have sent the previous two years I just assumed you had changed your focus. I just figured that with the youth movement you had infused Canada’s rosters with that you had decided to treat the WHC as a development process. Now based on his comments I know this isn’t true; although honestly I didn’t have a problem with it and I actually thought it was a good idea. Because the IIHF has decided this tournament will take place at the same time as the NHL playoffs we are not able to send our best roster anyways so why not give some of the good young talented kids playing in the NHL these days an opportunity to gain experience at the International level? It surely will help them in the NHL career and also any future WHC or Olympics they are selected to play in!
My second question for Bob is this: Are you really that naive and arrogant to believe that we can send our “C” or “D” squad to this tournament and expect to medal every year? I’M NOT!!! While I do believe that our “A” squad should win a Gold medal most of the time I’m not that naive to think that the rosters you have been sending are medal contenders. There are a lot of talented hockey players across this Globe and at least 8 countries are able to field a competitive team for this tournament every year. So if you truly believe the outcomes are unacceptable then you need to give you head a shake… Canadians alike don’t expect much from this tournament on a yearly basis so neither should you!
Now let’s be honest with ourselves.. the World Hockey Championships isn’t that important to Canadian hockey fans. We will watch it if it’s on but we aren’t exactly cutting out of work early to catch a game. There are numerous reasons why we don’t really support it and I would hope that your line of thinking is similar to mine and you don’t support it because you don’t like the way we are treated by the IIHF!
About 10 years ago the IIHF decided to host the World Juniors in Canada every other year (or more frequently) and this had to do with one thing and one thing only: PROFIT. Every year around Christmas time the tournament is sold out and we generate a lot of money for the IIHF so you would think that the IIHF would do us Canadians a favor and push the start date of the WHC back a few weeks… but they don’t. A few weeks is all it would take for the first and second round of the playoffs to be over and that way we (and other countries) would be able to field a much more competitive team. A logical person would deduce that more competitive teams mean a more entertaining tournament… so not only is the IIHF screwing us; they are screwing themselves!
Now while I did get a little of topic at the end of this blog I do have more to say regarding other comments Nicholson made to the media so check out Part 2 which will be posted soon.
About the Author
Written by Kirk Butler
Born and raised in Murray Harbour - PEI. Like many Canadians hockey is my religion; as a kid I had the pleasure of playing my minor hockey with Conn Smythe winner Brad Richards of the 2004 Stanley Cup winning Tampa Bay Lightning. I played competitive hockey until the age of 21 which included stops in the American Prep School System, Canadian Junior Hockey and the CIS. I now get my competitive fix on the golf course as a scratch golfer. More to come: Kirk Butler PEI, Canada