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Article written by Boris Bozic on the 09 Apr 2013 in Personal

And how was your weekend?  Surely it wasn’t so long ago that you’ve forgotten?  I heard the weather across the country was nice so I suspect some of you may have spent time outdoors getting some fresh air.  That’s exactly what I would have been doing if I didn’t have to be indoors for most of the weekend.  Our lad’s house league teamed played in in the GTHL Canadian Tire Hockey Tournament, which officially marked the end of his house league season.  How many games he would play, (meaning how many times I would have to drive back and forth to the arena?) would depend on how many games won, and points earned during the preliminary round.  Three trips…pardon me – three games guaranteed.  Including a 7:00 am start on Sunday morning; which meant we had to be at the arena by 6:15am.  There are only two reasons to be anywhere at that ungodly hour on a Sunday morning, catching a flight or making your tee time.  Adding to the fact of the less than optimal game time, was the fact that the result of the game was irrelevant – they already qualified for the semi-final.  Yeah, this was a glorified practice.  Making it to the semi-final was a surprise to many of the parents, and the coaches.  You can only imagine our shock and disbelief when the boys made it to the final.

Watching Mack develop as hockey player has been a real joy; this is only his third year of playing organized hockey, and he got his fill this year by playing on two teams.  One is house league team and he also made the select team.  That’s a lot of hockey, for the parents.  The kids playing?  Put them on as many teams as you want and they’ll be fine with it; Mack loves playing.  Unlike some other parents, Kathy and I do not live vicariously through Mack, with the hopes that he’ll make it to the pro’s one day.  His mom is his biggest cheerleader, and she lets him know, sometimes rather loudly, that she’s pulling from him.  It’s funny to watch him get set for the face off, look up into the crowd, and wave to his mom.  At that age being cool doesn’t supersede acknowledging your biggest fan.  The boy has a wonderful sense of humour, and he’s really grounded when it comes to the game.  He knows who the stars are on the team, and the role he plays.  He takes the game seriously but not himself.  Example, last year I tried to bribe him by saying “Mack, if you score a goal tonight I’ll take you to Tim’s and you can load up on sugar”.  Upon reflection he looks at me and says, “Make it ribs”.  Done! If you score a goal tonight we’ll stop at Swiss Chalet and I’ll get you ribs, a full rack.  I kid you not ten seconds into the game he ends up on a breakaway, roofs it into the top corner.  After high-fiving teammates he skates to center ice for the face-off, looks up at me into the crowd, and starts rubbing his stomach (the way you would when saying, mmmm…good).  I just finished wiping the tears away from laughing so hard when he scores his second goal.  Back to center ice for the face-off.  He looks for me in the crowd, and when he sees me, he drops his stick and gloves and imitates someone eating ribs.  I thought I was going to have to buy Depends because I couldn’t stop laughing.


Beyond the laughs I’m thankful for all the lessons Mack learned this year from hockey.  The importance of working as a team, and embracing structure and discipline to achieve the ultimate goal, winning.  He’s fortunate to play on teams with great head coaches.  Improving skills and hockey I.Q. is important.  But the life lessons learned are equally as important.  It’s was disappointing to see two teams refuse to shake hands after losing to Mack and his mates.  I can’t blame 11 year old’s for that.  That responsibility is in the coaches hands.  They should be embarrassed for what they’re teaching young and impressionable boys.  Mack was fortunate to be led by men who taught them to win with grace and lose with dignity.  Like the dignity they showed when the lost the championship game.  They stood on blue line together and watched the other boys celebrate as they were presented the championship trophy. Not an easy thing for an 11 year old to go through but that’s life; he’ll be all the better for it.


Until next time,


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