If there was ever any uncertainty about Ryan Kesler’s commitment to winning, it left us forever when he suited up for his country at the 2010 Winter Olympics and immediately turned heel. Kesler was so determined to bring home the gold that thumbed his nose at his NHL affiliations, chirping and taunting friend and Canuck teammate Roberto Luongo and professing his abhorrence for Canada, the country in which he plays.
“I hate them,” Kesler said, in the soundbyte of the tournament. He then proceeded to check “no” on this note Canada passed him in class.
Okay, maybe he was referring to the national hockey team, and not, as some presumed, the nation, but ’round these parts, one is the other. Canadians took it personally, especially Canuck fans, many of whom lost their heads and began crying for Kesler be traded out of town.
It’s probably a good thing those cries were ignored. While some, even within Vancouver, will never forget or forgive Kesler’s abrasiveness last February, his play this postseason has likely inspired many Canadians to changed their opinions on Kesler. And so too has Kesler changed his position on Canada. From Ian Busby:
Before Wednesday’s Game 1, the usually laconic Vancouver Canucks centre tried to say he’s a true Canuck during an interview with CBC’s Scott Oake.
“We love our hockey up here,” the American said. “I say ‘we’ cause I almost feel Canadian.”
It seems the Livonia, Mich., product is starting to adopt his NHL home of the past eight years.
Makes sense. Kesler and this country were made for each other. Ryan Kesler’s heart is probably the only place on the planet where hockey is taken as seriously as it is in Canada.
Anyway, take it away, Paul Bremer:
Tags: Canadian fans, Dudehuggery, Haters Yo, Kesler, Kesler takes this very seriously, ryan kesler wants to hug and kiss canada