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Beating the Odds

Canada’s New Hero

I first heard of Sidney Crosby years ago when a sports writer friend mentioned a young man who was supposed to be the next Wayne Gretzky. Hockey insiders had even anointed him “The Next One.”
Now, of course, this young man no longer has to be the next Gretzky. It’s quite enough for him to be Sidney Crosby. Yesterday he scored the goal heard around the world, giving Canada a 3-2 overtime victory over the United States for the Olympic gold medal.
At age of 22, Crosby has won the Stanley Cup and an Olympic gold medal. That makes him one of the most important figures in his country. Tens of thousands of boys ages seven through 14 are now dreaming of being just like Crosby, many more than who dream of becoming the next prime minister.
Should a 22-year-old hockey player even be a role model? Some people would say that it’s silly, that there’s nothing to admire about someone who hits a piece of rubber with a stick. Others would argue — correctly in my opinion — that hockey is just like any other area of life. It can be done either well or poorly, and that there are responsibilities and moments where you must either meet those responsibilities or fall short.
Crosby, even at his young age, has shown that he can accept responsibility and perform his best when it means the most. He’s come a long way since last year, when a poll said 52% of people thought Crosby was the biggest crybaby in the National Hockey League.
Now he’s the biggest role model in his country.


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