President Barack Obama decided to “troll” visiting Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday over who is better at hockey – Americans or Canadians.
I don’t want to gloss over the very real differences between Americans and Canadians. There’s some things we will probably never agree on.
Whose beer is better? Who is better at hockey? Where’s the Stanley Cup right now?
Is it in my home town, with the Chicago Blackhawks?!
While I could quibble with the president over beer – Montreal’s Dieu Du Ciel is arguably the best brewery on the planet in my humble opinion – I will save that for another time.
I will instead take him to task for his patently ridiculous comment about hockey.
Far from being a clever jab at Trudeau, Obama’s attempted Showtime at the Apollo one-liner – clearly written for him by a White House staffer who wouldn’t know the difference between hockey puck and a hand grenade – demonstrated just how little the president actually knows about hockey.
I love this country and I am proud to have been born and raised here in the U.S.A. I also, however, am a die-hard hockey fan and rec league hockey junkie – and as great as the United States is, we are not – by any stretch of the imagination – better than Canada in hockey.
First, the Cup isn’t actually in Chicago. It travels the globe roughly 320 days a year and the remaining time it is housed in the Hockey Hall of Fame – in Toronto, which is in Canada.
Second, while his beloved Chicago Blackhawks did indeed win Lord Stanley’s Cup last year, maybe someone should inform Mr. 57 States Obama that the current Blackhawks roster has 3 times as many Canadians on it as Americans. Indeed, there are as many Blackhawks players from Winnipeg, Manitoba (population 660,000), as there are Americans (population 319,000,000).
Third, overall, Canadians makeup up half of the players in the NHL – more than twice the number of American players. Historically, that number has been even higher – in 1990 Canadian players accounted for almost 3 out of every 4 players.
Finally, I guess none of this should come as a surprise. Considering that the White House is just blocks from the Verizon Center where the Washington Capitals play and considering that President Obama has not once gone to a game in the seven years he has been president, despite a fan petition to try to get him to come to a game, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that Obama is clueless when it comes to hockey.