Minor Hockey Moments

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Warning to teen hockey heroes

Sometimes, ethics and morality can go out the window when you are a teen and a local hockey hero living away from your parents. Read this sexually charged tale in The London Free Press.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Adults confront referee on ice

Just when you thought you'd seen it all in Canadian minor hockey comes this story and video clip from a HOUSE LEAGUE midget game in Hamilton in which adults open the ice door and confront the officials over some perceived slight during the game.
C'mon. Minor hockey refs don't get paid enough for the abuse they take and, seriously, it's a kids' game. That is all.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Stompin' Tom provided soundtrack for hockey

There's not a Canadian who doesn't know at least some lyrics to Stompin' Tom Connors' songs about this country's people and places. Born to a teen mom in Maritimes, handed over to the Children's Aid Society in Prince Edward Island, a runaway who hitchhiked from job to job before finally ending up in a bar in remote Timmins, Ont., where he was a nickle short for a beer, Connors got his musical start at age 28 when the bartender asked him to sing for his beer.
His most famous song was The Hockey Song, used in minor hockey rinks and NHL arenas across Canada. A little ironic because Connors' upbringing and childhood poverty meant he likely never could afford to play hockey, at least in a rink.
We used to play The Hockey Song on a boom box in the dressing room when the kids were atoms, way before they graduated to their choice of rap songs with dubious lyrics. Eventually, so no one was offended, boom boxes gave way to iPods and quiet personal tastes. No matter what the growing-older players listened to, my head always played The Hockey Song.
Last night during the NHL Maple Leafs-Senators game, the played a bit of the song. Some fans stood and sang while the scoreboard flashed the announcement.
Stompin' Tom died at age 77 yesterday, March 6, 2013.
I think I'll celebrate his life by heading to the rink with my son.

Monday, March 4, 2013

No hurt hockey for Canadian kids?

The debate over body checking in minor hockey is back in Canada.
For years, the norm in most areas of the country was to introduce body checking at age 11. Now, many ban it from house leagues at all age levels. Some want it banned for all skill levels until age 16.
The rationale is clear enough: No one wants kids to be hurt playing a sport.
If only kids would be coached - or would follow the instructions of coaches - to use body contact effectively as part of the game strategy and not as an intimidation technique.
When my son grew out of competitive hockey and into house league juvenile, the game seemed lacking, sometimes silly ... but safer. Definitely quieter, from the sound of the boards to the behaviour of the parents/fans.
I doubt body contact will be eliminated from elite Canadian AAA minor hockey and doubt it should be. Can you seriously imagine arriving in major junior at age 16 having never played rough-and-tumble contact hockey?
For everyone else, the game might be ready to evolve into one of skating and shooting ... and no body checking.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Ontario teen loses it after ejection

OK, so there's a lot of pressure on major junior teens in Canada. But I bet young Mr. Hutchinson of the Kingston Frontenacs would like a mulligan for how he acted in front of fans and, more importantly a camera held by a YouTube account holder.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

2012 NHLPA Goals & Dreams Cup (Honouring Rick Rypien)

Teen goalie pays heavy price for his style

Is the chase of an pro hockey career worth this? A talented, athletic Toronto teen has undergone multiple surgeries with more on the horizon all from playing and practising the butterfly goaltending style, says the Toronto Star.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Coach jailed for tripping player

Remember the British Columbia hockey coach who purposely tripped a kid when they were lined up to shake hands? The kid broke his wrist when he fell.
Now the "coach" is in jail - 15 days to be served weekends.
Which is OK, 'cause he isn't spending time at the rink anymore.
Here's the link to the CBC story.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

North Dakota fans in middle of KKK uproar

Definitely not what's meant when hockey fans are asked to dress for a white-out in stands. Kids in North Dakota decided dressed in Ku Klux Klan garb was cool. It was not.
It is a sensitive issue for American society - and maybe especially so for hockey which is trying to grow in appeal for young athletes and fans beyond the traditional base of white families.
In the U.S., where high school hockey is the big show and not community-based minor hockey as it is in Canada, the sport is largely white. Only a handful of non-white athletes play in the NHL, and most of these are from Canada.
This will change, but the effort isn't helped by the antics of these North Dakota kids.