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Montreal Canadiens and parochialism (or should that be nationalism?)


msj

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In another thread (World Cup) a certain poster (who, I suppose, I will have to take off my ignore list, again) mentioned that Canada and North America seemed so mature when it came to sports.

The World Cup is nasty nationalism while the NHL is all about rooting for one's home team no matter who the players come from to comprise the team (you know, sorta like how League Football in Europe is and sorta like how the Winter Olympics hockey is like the World Cup).

The argument being something like Canadians and Americans will wave their team flags no matter the origin of the team players (Halak, a Slovak, being mentioned - whoever he is).

Now, maybe he's right - Canadians are mature. Maybe it's some Quebecois who aren't though:

Canadiens at centre of duelling sports: Playing hockey and playing politics

So, are the Canadiens a federalist plot to continue Canadian hegemony over Quebec? ;)

Speculation was rife on Thursday that U.S.-born winger Brian Gionta, who has been working to learn French, will imminently be named the team’s 28th captain, following in the skates of such Quebec-born cultural and sporting icons as Maurice (Rocket) Richard and Jean Béliveau.

Although the days of the Flying Frenchmen are long past, it’s the kind of symbolic move that will rankle some segments of the team’s fan base.

Senior members of the National Assembly’s Official Opposition Parti Québécois – including leader Pauline Marois – have even gone so far as to publicly attack the team in recent days, saying the Sainte Flanelle has been co-opted into a federalist propaganda organ. ...

The party’s culture critic, well-known former actor Pierre Curzi, got the ball rolling in a recent television interview, where he said it’s no accident there is a dwindling number of French-speaking Quebeckers in bleu-blanc-rouge.

“The people who don’t wish Quebec to become a country, who don’t wish French to flourish, they know very well that you must take over a certain number of symbols of identity,” he told the television magazine Les Francs-tireurs, adding “the federal power” has seized control of the Canadiens.

Then Ms. Marois weighed in on Wednesday, and while she stopped short of endorsing Mr. Curzi’s line of thinking, said: “I think Quebeckers would like to have more francophones in this team.”

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The average Canadiens fan would love to see more Quebecers on the team... just like I like to see BC'ers make it on to the Canucks. When politicians with agendas (other than the love of hockey) get involved, things go stupid. :huh:

Edited by The_Squid
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