"I can't believe that they're taking a chunk of history, especially when we're hosting it in our country," said Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson.
Bob Nicholson and Team Canada look to be victimized at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics by the International Olympic Committee and the Canadian Olympic Committee. With an old rule now only being enforced, it appears that Team Canada will not be able to play with its beloved Maple Leaf trademark on their uniforms.
The logo has not been a problem the past three Winter Games, but appears to be an issue this season, even though the Games are in Vancouver. Nicholson is claiming that Team Canada will lose millions of dollars in revenue if they have to change the design of the jersey; he said that money from the lost revenues would not be able to be used to support Hockey Canada for Women’s hockey or grassroots hockey funding, which sales apparently go towards. I am sure that even if Team Canada was forced to change the logo, instead of using the player in the leaf, that they would still make sufficient amount of money. Why not go for a more simplified change? – fans who love the game and Team Canada will more than likely buy the new, re-designed jersey.
The reason for the outrage by Hockey Canada was the IOC decided this summer in Beijing that they would abide by their own rules and demand that teams do not place a logo on their uniforms and that there will be no exemptions. Seems a little strange that they only now want to abide by their rules that they have turned a blind eye to for the past three Games.
But at the same time, for Nicholson to declare that the COC is putting Team Canada at a disadvantage in our own country is a weak argument – Canada has the best shot to win the gold, with or without the Maple Leaf jersey. With the amount of Canadian talent that Team Canada can ice, there is no need to worry about a jersey swaying the chances of winning – as it is highly unlikely they will lose.
I say that Hockey Canada should embrace this chance to change the jersey, to make it simpler, yet even more Canadian. Make another jersey that fans will want to buy and if they are really worried about losing funds continue to sell the jersey even if the players are not allowed to wear it on the ice.
Hockey Canada appears to want to be angrier at the IOC and the COC than to change and be flexible, like Canadians. It is still a bizarre rule to now only enforce and not have the COC backing it like they have the past three Games, but Canadians love hockey, especially when the best of the best are iced on home territory.
Yes, the Canadian jersey is loved and cherished by many players and fans, but Hockey Canada is making too much of a deal about this when they should be focusing more on icing the best team possible for winning on home ice – and if they do not win gold, you can bet they will blame it on the jersey rule. And that will be even more of a tragedy than a design change of the ‘beloved’ jersey.