Close on the heels of my last episode I find myself drinking a fine beer, eating a plate of goulash and potato dumplings, and watching hockey. I noticed something else about the sport that embodies toughness. Not only do players get up when then are knocked down, they also don’t whine about the call they got or didn’t get. They go to the box or they keep on skating. I saw a bad call and the alleged offender left the ice without comment. It was a weak call at a critical moment, but he sat without whining about it. Sure, while serving the penalty he might be cursing the ref, but he’s not going to hurt his team further by making an ass of himself. He’s there to play hockey.
There was a time in basketball when a player would raise his hand when a foul was called on him, to make things easier for the scorekeeper. That doesn’t happen anymore. If I was an NFL ref, I’d throw the flag on any receiver who made the “throw the flag” gesture. American football is the absolute worst for players bitching and moaning to the officials. Just. Play. The damn. Game.
Hockey. They just play.