With the Olympics now underway, we have entered the time when teammates become competitors and rivals become teammates. This amount of National Hockey League players are only put on the international stage once every four years and it’s an amazing sight to see. The absolutely best hockey players in the world all meeting in one place to compete for the coveted gold medal. It’s a wonderful time to be a hockey fan, but there is something that I have noticed recently that is concerning to me. Citizens of one country choosing to cheer on another. It’s something that just doesn’t make any sense to me.
Am I being overly patriotic? Possibly. Will some consider me ridiculous? Absolutely. Do I care? Nope. It’s the Olympics, for God’s sake; when pride for country is supposed to stand tall. The ultimate competition to prove which athlete or team is the best at their sport. While I do understand that everyone has their favorite players, ultimately it’s about the logo on the front of the jersey and not the name on the back. It may be cliche, but it’s true.
We all want to see our favorite players perform well at the Olympics. It’s the international stage. What better way to bring conversation about your own team than with Shea Weber or Roman Josi performing well at the Olympics. It’s great attention, but it’s not about the player. It’s about the team. It’s about what that team represents. Are there some players on Team USA that are less favorable to some because of their actions in the past? Of course. For the two weeks that are the Olympics though, all of that gets thrown out the window. It’s about your country first. Not the player.
All too much on social media, I’m seeing Americans saying that they won’t be cheering for Team USA in hockey because they don’t like the players on the team. Well I’m sorry, that’s not what it’s about. If a Canadian was caught cheering against Team Canada and for any other team in hockey, they would most likely be thrown out of the country (can any Canadian back me up on that?). I think they get it. They get just how important it is.
This is one of those times when I believe the whole world knows that this is when you express the ultimate pride in your country, especially when it seems to be frowned upon so much nowadays. Would I ever expect a Canadian or a Russian to cheer for the United States over their respective team in international competition? Not in a million years. So this is why I ask, what on earth is wrong with some of you?
Cheer for your favorite player to do well, that’s quite alright. I want Shea Weber to do well in the Olympics because who knows, it may finally catapult him to the top of everyone’s Norris Trophy favorites. But I do not favor Team Canada over Team USA. Nor do I favor Team Switzerland over Team USA because of Roman Josi. Seth Jones would not approve of that. Because America.
For these next two weeks however, it’s on Suter, on Parise, on Oshie and Kane, cheer on JVR to score along with Kesler and Brown. It’s time for America. County first.
So what do you think? Comment below and vote in our poll.[polldaddy poll=7789472]
View the rebuttal from Zach Bryan.