How broad do we think their shoulders are?

Every year, starting on Boxing Day, Canada rests its hopes and dreams on 23 teenagers, to defend our pride and our country in the World Junior Hockey Championships. When the tournament is held in Canada, we seem to have even bigger expectations of these kids.

Tonight, Team Canada lost in the semi-finals to Russia. The team that beat us last year in the final game, destroying our hopes, once again, of being the best of the best in Junior-level hockey around the globe.

All across Twitter and Facebook, posts were flying about how we couldn’t have won after the crappy second period and all the penalties Canada took. But these boys pulled their shit together in the third period to come back from a 6-1 deficit, scoring 4 goals in the third, eventually losing 6-5. It was a nailbiter of a game. My heart was racing, and at times, it was difficult to watch. But what surprised me the most is the lack of support fellow Canadians were giving these kids when the going got tough, only to jump on the bandwagon again once that third goal was scored.

It’s easy to be tough and to know everything when you’re watching the game from your couch, tweeting advice and displaying your coaching skills on Facebook. But what were you doing when you were 17? Worrying about your diploma exam at the end of the month, and who you were going to go to prom with.

These boys put everything they had on the line for our Canadian pride, and we need to support them. Sure, we won’t be playing Sweden for gold on Thursday, but what’s so bad about playing Finland for bronze? These kids have done what the majority of Canadians will never do or experience – they have held the hopes, dreams, pride, and patriotism of all Canadians on their shoulders since December 26. It’s our responsibility to support them all the way, no matter what the outcome.

As Washington Capitals star (and former Russian Junior team member) Alex Ovechkin said in a tweet after the game “it’s just hockey.”


One thought on “How broad do we think their shoulders are?

  1. Agreed. Nicely put. I often feel the same about pro hockey. Sure they make a lot of money, but does that make being away from family and on the road all the time glamorous? And could you do your job if people were screaming at you and calling you names because you didn’t get that goal?

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