KAMLOOPS — My reaction as a hockey fan and proud Canadian supporter to this morning's men's hockey loss was a little surprising to myself.
I saw that Germany had defeated Canada 4-3 — and I laughed.
Maybe it was because these Olympics have been so successful for Canada already.
As of this morning, we had 27 medals, standing second in the world and the best we've ever done.
Amateur athletes in a variety of disciplines are excelling, and we have every reason to be extremely proud.
Maybe I laughed because the result was so unexpected.
Germany defeating Canada?
They couldn't even do that on Vimy Ridge.
This must be the greatest moment in the history of the German hockey program.
But the biggest reason I laughed was because I really wasn't taking this tournament seriously, and I don't know anyone else who was.
The reason the tournament is lacking in interest is, of course, because it's not the best players in the world.
In fact, it's only the best players who are not playing in the best league in the world.
With the women's tournament, I actually lost sleep watching the gold medal game, because these were bar none the best female hockey players both countries had to offer.
Because the NHL didn't allow its players to participate, the Olympics were forced to take a half measure for the hockey tournament.
It's not the best amateurs, and it's not the best professionals.
It's just the best professionals we could find with a couple of spare weeks.
When you lose a sporting event, it may be the easy way out to trivialize the entire event.
In this case, though, it was just another second-rate hockey tournament, not unlike the Spengler Cup.
Never heard of the Spengler Cup?