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12-03-2012, 01:17 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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Country: Canada
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Another thing worth noting when comparing hockey with a lot of other sports is the unique skill sets that hockey uses. Become a competent hockey player takes a lot of time honing both skating and stick handling skills, and most players who amount to anything even at a midget level start at a very young age (under 7). When a kid is six and hockey isn't the most prevalent sport in his/her culture, will they want to spend the time learning how to skate backwards and backhand, or will they want to throw on some cleats and kick a ball around or pick up a mitt and toss a baseball around.

In Canada all of our athlete icons are hockey players; I bet I could walk into a kindergarten class and almost every kid in there would know who Crosby, Stamkos and Toews are, but very few of them would know who Joey Votto or Dwayne de Rosario are, despite them both being MVPs in their respective sports recently. This makes them want to invest the time to learn the sport and be like these larger than life personas. A classroom of American kids on the other hand could probably all tell me who Lebron James, Tom Brady and Derek Jeter are. Once one or more Americans become bonafide superstars in the league (not just "the best American player in the league"), we should see hockey interest increase greatly

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