“It’s New York and Washington. The economic and political engines of America. United in the birth of the country; they were also linked in tragedy. They were the twin targets of the coordinated attacks on 9/11 and it’s crazy to compare what the emergency responders did during that time, but a spirit has to start somewhere… You can’t help but be struck by the players and how they’ve played these games. They are like police officers, they are like firefighters. You can’t fight fire with ego.”
Those were the words Ron MacLean presented as Hockey Night in Canada came on the air for game 6 last night in Washington. My only question is, why? Why even bring up 9/11. We all know what happened 11 years ago, but it really has no relevance for the hockey game. And comparing 40 hockey players to those who risked (and in some cases gave) their lives to save others just seems stupid and pointless.
I think the bigger problem for MacLean is he tries too hard. It seems he’s always trying to come up with the big pun. Or the big opening for the big game. How about a couple stats on the series? Maybe some history from the last time New York was up 3-2 on the Caps in the playoffs? If he didn’t try so hard for the big comparisons and the big puns he would be a better host.
Usually it is MacLean’s Coach’s Corner sidekick Don Cherry who has to issue apologies. Today it was MacLean and the CBC Communications team who had to. Here is their release.
As Hockey Night In Canada went to air for last night’s game between Washington and New York, in his opening remarks, Ron MacLean described the on-going battle between the two teams and made reference to the respective cities, both of which were 9/11 targets.
Ron and CBC would like to clarify what may have been misunderstood by his comments.
“Washington and New York. The two cities united by the tragedy of 9/11. I, like everyone on the planet in his or her lifetime, saw beyond the horror, the single greatest testament to the strength of the human spirit in the efforts of the first responders”, says Ron Maclean.
“We never know if we’ll have that spirit. The bravery, the resilience. As I made clear, the hockey games in no way compare. However Sports has proven a worthy training ground in nurturing the qualities which beget that spirit. To say he plays like a firefighter or a policeman would instantly conjure the traits an athlete most desires, especially in New York and Washington. There could be no higher praise of a player, no greater choice of a role model .
But as I said of first responders, ‘Our worst day is their everyday’. They stand alone.”