I’m not going to name names. I’m not going to point fingers. If you’re a close follower of the Elite Ice Hockey League or even the Sheffield Steelers, I’ll give you one guess as to who uttered the words that have made the title of this article. How old are you, 12? It’s 2014, time to get a grip.
Women’s hockey doesn’t count? You must be watching a completely different tournament my friend. (If you’re even watching at all). This is the closest, tightest and most competitive this Olympic tournament has ever been. Even if Canada and the United States are still the two main powerhouses, the rest of the world is indeed catching up. Case in point: JAPAN made the Olympic tournament.
As with the junior leagues and NHL, foreign women are coming to North American shores to pursue their hockey dreams. There are scholarships galore for collegiate teams across Canada and the U.S. Canada has their own professional women’s league and the U.S. isn’t too far behind. It’s these leagues and structures that are making the girls interested in the world of hockey from the middle of nowhere, Switzerland, Sweden, Japan, Finland, and turning them into household names and superstars. Finnish goaltending sensation Noora Raty went to the same University as Phil Kessel.
These women train just as hard, hell if not harder then the men do. Why? Because they’re women. For some strange reason in this world, they
have to compete even more to get NOTICED. Once they are noticed, its bullshit male counterparts tend to come out with idiotic sayings like this. Why? Because they are threatened. They know what they see is good. God forbid, women’s hockey got more popular then men’s right?!
My Twitter timeline was FILLED with men who said to sign up Noora Raty or Florence Schilling to their favourite NHL teams because of they way they were playing. Some were saying they’d be afraid to stand in front of a Megan Agosta or Amanda Kessel slapshot. And they’re right.
I played competitive fastball for years. My idol was Jennie Finch as I was a pitcher. I heard it all growing up, and I was even mistaken for a boy because of how hard I threw. (Or could’ve been the buzzcut I had going on but I digress.) I used to write stories in elementary school about playing in the Olympics for Team Canada. Guess what? Can’t do that anymore as they pulled fast-pitch softball out of the Olympics. Why? Less viewership. Men would rather watch men play boring baseball.
Don’t let that happen to Women’s Hockey. They deserve more then that. I’d put money on the U.S. and Canadian women’s team beating the Sheffield Steelers.