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Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006

Responses, Part 8
Do you think the comments Gretzky made after Monday's hockey game will motivate Team Canada? Is he right when he says the whole world wants Canada to lose?

Here are responses to the above question:

I'm an American hockey fan and an admirer of things Canadian. Gretzky let the pressure get to him, as well as the emotions and nationalism, and he lost it. I'm sure that he'll apologize because he is a class guy, though I can't imagine Messier carrying on as Gretzky. If he doesn't, then this will go down as a black mark. I'll cheer for my team and that team isn't Canada. So I suppose that means that, at some point, I may want Canada to lose. Does that mean that I'm out to get Canada?

I think he came off kind of sounding like a whiner. If the world didn't want us too lose before they do now .
Grant Rankin

The Great One is right. The rest of the World is out to beat us as a country. They've got great players that play with heart and I don't think that they really care where the end up in the standings as long as they beat Canada or have a good showing against Canada. Lets face it as long as we're the team to beat, the road will be hard for us. And they will do anything to beat us. And we've been the team to beat since the beginning. That's not going to change any time soon. So as a team they have to get it together and want this more than they do. Until they do, we as Canadians, are doomed to watch us lose in Men's Hockey. I hope that Gretzky's words motivate the team and if they have any pride in themselves they will give it all they've got. And no matter what the outcome, be able to say "I did the best I could do" and know it in their hearts. As a Canadian that's all I ask.

Gretzky is right. It is time to realize that the rest of the world wants our game. The rant shows Gretzky's grit. The team played tough. More of the same will deliver the gold.
Fred Engstrom

First of all, everyone who has suggested Wayne is "whining" is being ludicrous. Remember this is sport. People are passionate about sport, right from us weekend warriors to professional athletes. Passion is at the core of what sport means to people. In Wayne Gretzky you have a very passionate and proud person. Maybe you missed the last 20 years but he just happened to be the most dominant hockey player the game has ever seen. What do you think drove him to achieve all that he has accomplished ... passion. So here's a guy listening to everyone complaining about how bad his team is doing, how everyone wants to beat Canada (and why wouldn't they thanks to all those stupid Molson Canadian commercials). What did you expect him to do, roll over and say nothing. As for it being a ploy to motivate his team, what a bunch a crap. These guys need no more motivation, they are there for the same reason that Wayne is, a passion and pride in their game and their country.
Kyle Russell

Pretty funny how all these media types are now either tucking their tails, or calling Gretzky delusional.... yeah, that's real smart for your credibility- question the greatest hockey player and mind (and Canadian athlete) out there. Yeah, real brilliant. I e-mailed a link to the story to a mere 10 people and everyone agrees. Gretzky is just saying (with red face) what all of us are thinking. Executives in NBC offices need ratings now that figure skating has calmed down, and the media is falling for it.
Roger Sanche

Another example of Canada's national inferiority complex. Nobody is out "to get Canada" in hockey. My respect for the "great One" has just dropped a notch.
F. Norman
Stockton CA

I think he acted like a pouting child. While the great one was terrific in his prime he is now a has been. The Olympics are supposed to be made up of good sports (ie. the Canadian and Russian figure skaters). Let not the likes of Gretzky spoil that.
Doug Tod

I am so glad Wayne stood up & said the things he did. Many of us have thought this for years, finally someone said it. We Canadians are to Polite, I for one am SO proud of him.
Fay Robbie

Gretzky clearly showed his arrogance with the comment: "the only 2 stories at the Olympics this week are pairs figure skating and us". This makes me greatly admire someone like Becky Scott who when asked about hockey said she doesn't follow the men. And for good reason! Come on Wayne, stop whining and show some positive spirit and support ALL the athletes, The overwhelmingly spoiled men's hockey team deserves to be spanked, and they will be -- by the USA or Sweden!!
K. Bihari

Team Canada should not "need" to be motivated. Playing for Canada in the Olympics should be motivation enough.
D. Hilson

Until yesterday as an American if the U.S. didn't win I would be rooting for Canada, but now I hope Finland or anyone else you play kicks your butts just like Sweden did.
Randy Byrd

His comments were sour grapes. Canada is no longer the "supreme" hockey nation and obviously hasn't been for years.
Mark George

I think he is exaggerating and preparing us for possible failure. Of course other countries wants us to lose and we want them to lose! Mori Karimi

Another American voice here. Before the Olympics started, I told a hockey friend of mine--who happens to be Canadian, as it turns out--that I was going to root for Canada over all comers. While I love my country dearly, flaws and all, I love what Canada has done for hockey. It's more than past time for the Greatest Hockey Nation to reclaim the Olympic Gold that it last won so long ago. So, no, the world is not against Canada in general or Canadian hockey in particular. When the team takes the ice against Finland, many thousands of Americans and other world citizens will be pulling for the guys wearing the maple leaf. Unfortunately, Wayne Gretzky's comments won't help the team. The problem isn't the players, who collectively are the most talented hockey team on earth and WANT to win. It's not the media. It's not the officiating, either, even though a penalty should have been called on Hamrlik. The problem is the team is playing too tight, as if they were trying to avoid losing rather than pulling out all the stops to win. That's a coaching problem. Wayne, if you want to really help the team, find a way to help Pat Quinn.
John Ford

Yes, I think his comments will motivate our team, and I agree that players on other teams would like to see us lose.
Steve Forgeron

As a resident of the United States, I am only concerned with our Olympic hockey team and its results. If the USA doesn't win, the only thing I would like to see is competitive hockey. Wayne Gretzky seems to be a bit of a whiner. I live in Detroit which allows me a fairly good aspect of the team Canada mentality, which is "Canada deserves the gold medal because we invented hockey." Gee Wayne, if that is the case, the rest of the world is so sorry for the inconvenience. Let's not delay ourselves any further. Go ahead, Canada, score at will. The rest of us will just skate around a little bit to get this formality over with. But that is not the case. Every team in the tournament came with the intention of winning the gold. Don't tell any team (especially Finland) that the match is a mere prep for the anointing of Team Canada as the greatest. You'd best believe that if Fleury lays on Richter when play is in the US zone someone will knock him to the locker room on a permenant basis. In closing, Canada is the favorite. They have the best team on paper and if the games were played on mere potential, Team Canada would get the gold. So Whine-I mean Wayne-expect everyone's best shot. This is part of being the favorite in a major athletic contest-something I thought he would have learned in his the playing days. After all, he was the Greatest.
R.P. Elle
Sterling Heights, MI

I totally agree with the Great One. As a Canadian living in the USA, people here think that Canadians play dirty hockey and deserve everything they get. I also believe that most people who say these derogatory statements know little if anything about the sport but say it is too violent. I guess American football, boxing, hurling, and numerous other sports aren't violent at all.
David Kowbel
 Part 7 All responses Part 9 

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