A recap of quotes from the Hot Stove Sessions at the Molson Canadian World Hockey Summit in Toronto.
I like the tradition of keeping the Olympics on a big surface and I was hoping the Europeans would have an advantage (at the Vancouver Olympics).
There are scrums during training camp in Europe but no fights where you drop the gloves. I was surprised here … they were happening even before the puck was dropped. But now I have no problem with fighting, except when they fight for no reason. It serves a purpose and it has happened for so long here that it is accepted and expected.
Yes, we could put an NHL team in Stockholm but you have domestic leagues that still need to survive. We need to be careful. Just because the NHL is the most powerful league in the world … what about the three teams already in Stockholm?
I have a problem with the punishment in the international game. If you fight late in the game, you miss the rest of the game and you miss the next game. Guys are taking cheap shots because they know that. There needs to be a level of accountability.
There needs to be a team in Winnipeg, a team in Quebec City and another team here (in Toronto) before we start putting teams in Sweden.
A rink in every community is not a luxury, it’s a necessity … maybe not like a library but it should be a place to make for a healthy community.
Children are our future fan base, our future supporters.
In Germany, we watch the NHL, so we decided we needed arenas that hold 20,000 people. We’re a major industrial power of 90 million people but we have one sport and that’s soccer. Everything else is on the fringe.
The cost (of hockey) is an obstacle. It’s fraction of the cost to buy sneakers and a pair of shorts and put (your kid) on a grassy field to play soccer. Like Steve (Yzerman) said, municipalities have a responsibility to supply people with a certain standard of living. In Canada, even though the facilities are old, the kids still go there and play hockey.
My parents are both school teachers. I have heard them talk about the decline of physical education in schools. I’m on the board for Participaction and we need a resurgence. My son doesn’t like hockey but, as a Canadian kid, I think he should learn how to skate. Kids should learn about hockey for recreation and for the opportunity to learn and love the game. As hockey advocates, I think it an area we can push at the higher levels to get (grass-roots) action.
You can’t hear me? All right … mic. Besides, with all the cameras in the room, I can’t swear the way I did at the last (summit).
The volunteer is the linchpin of our system in North America and God bless them. We wouldn’t have a lot of the players we have today if it wasn’t for those volunteers. A professional coach is under a different set of pressures than the guy who coaches his kid because he loves him.
It’s our business to know who (the good players) are. We don’t get calls from 15-year-olds. We get calls from their parents. So, we’re in the business of managing expectations. If we had a dollar for every minute we spend managing expectations …