From five in the morning practice as a kid to beer league or the pros as an adult, hockey has shaped everything from A to Z in our lives. The game has taught us to persevere through the inevitable obstacles that life throws at us on a daily basis. Speaking personally, I would not be where I am today without the greatest sport in the world on my resume. Hockey has given us even more off the ice than it did on.
Beginning in youth hockey, we form friendships that end up lasting a lifetime. Camaraderie is naturally created from the agony of a sudden death loss in the extra period. It is created from the glory of a championship victory in double overtime. Experiencing the ups and downs with teammates gets us ready for the roller-coaster ride of ups and downs in life.
Hockey has shaped our culture. As our career in the sport continued throughout the years, our language was changed for better, or for worse. We could probably write a new dictionary on hockey slang from our time around the rink. Often times we will see that the entire team has neglected a visit to the local barber, as our hair starts to flow every which way out of our helmets.
The game has given us priceless memories throughout the years. Memories were created with the best of friends and family, in locations spanning states/provinces, which will last a lifetime. Some of our fondest memories come from the time spent in a locker room full of the biggest beauties around.
Whether you are just starting youth hockey or have already hung them up for good, we can all agree that hockey has shaped our lives in some form. Once a hockey player, always a hockey player. Cheers to the greatest sport known to mankind. Cheers to hockey.