Did you know that there are over 1.6 million people playing organized hockey around the world? Hockey is a team sport played on ice, where skaters use wooden or composite sticks to shoot a hard rubber puck into the other team’s net. Each team usually has 5 players and 1 goalie on the ice at a time. The first organized game was played on March 3rd, 1875 in Montreal, Quebec. In 1902, the Western Pennsylvania Hockey League was the first to pay their players.
In 1910, the National Hockey Association was formed in Montreal. They would changed the rules, splitting the game into three, 20 minute periods, introducing a system of minor and major penalties, where the player would spend time in the penalty box, leaving their team short one player.
Trust me when I tell you, that it is one place you don’t want to be! The penalty box is like when you’re really bad at home and your parents send you to your room for a time out. It’s basically the same thing, but now it is a STRANGER in a weird zebra shirt called a referee giving you the time out. How weird is that?
In 1917, the league became the National Hockey League known today as the NHL. I think hockey is the most fascinating sport in the world. At the age of three, I played my very first real hockey game. I scored the FIRST goal, on my FIRST shift of my very FIRST game. I was SO small, I couldn’t even see over the boards! Hockey is also about having fun and making friendships. There are five boys on my team that I have played with for 7 years!! We aren’t just team mates, we are the best of friends. Everything revolves around hockey with my friends and I. If we aren’t playing a league game, we are playing NHL 12 on Xbox, playing mini sticks or a scrimmage on my backyard rink. I currently play on 2 hockey teams, the Mississauga Jets and my school team, the Queen of Heaven Crusaders. I spend about 8-12 hours a week on the ice, which includes games, practices and my backyard rink.
My favourite player is Steven Stamkos. His birthday is February 7th, 1990. That would make him 22 years old in just 3 days. Not only was he the first overall in the OHL draft, but he was also first overall in the NHL draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning. In his second year, he was the league’s leading goal scorer and in his third year, he was named to the All-Star team. Steven Stamkos is living his dream in the NHL. My dream is winning the Stanley Cup.