House of Commons Hansard #58 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was sport.


National Sport ActPrivate Members' Business

6:50 p.m.


John Harvard Liberal Winnipeg—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, I want to rise and speak for just a couple of minutes on this bill. I certainly want to indicate my support for the bill in principle and its amendment. I am more than happy to give my support to it.

I think it is entirely appropriate for a Winnipeger to stand up and enter into this debate because Winnipeg and the province of Manitoba have contributed greatly to this great game of ours called hockey, especially the NHL.

I would like to remind the acting Speaker, who naturally served in the NHL as a referee, that perhaps one of the greatest of referees ever to serve in the NHL and currently serves in the NHL is none other than Andy Van Hellemond and he comes from that great suburb of Winnipeg called St. Boniface.

Andy's name is just one of dozens and dozens from Winnipeg who have contributed to this great game of hockey. For example, does anyone know, and this is just a little piece of trivia, that the NHL player holding the record for the three fastest goals comes from Winnipeg. I am sure, Mr. Speaker, you would recognize the name Billy Mosienko. He is probably about six months older than you, or something like that. Sorry about that. Billy Mosienko of course played for many years. He had a sterling, outstanding career with the Chicago Black Hawks and his record of three goals I believe in 21 seconds still stands. I would doubt whether that record will ever be broken.

Who can ever forget Bill Juzda, the great defenceman who probably could deliver some of the greatest bone cracking body checks ever delivered on ice in the NHL.

I am sure you cannot forget Don `Bones' Raleigh who was a great player with the New York Rangers. How about Tom Johnson who played with not only the Boston Bruins but the Montreal Canadiens. I would like to say politicians are given to this kind of thing. The Tom, who shares my ancestry which is Canadian Icelandic, grew up a mere 14 miles from my community. He grew up in a little town called Baldur and I grew up in a little town called Glenboro.

There was another great hockey player from Manitoba. Again, Mr. Speaker, I am sure that given your age and your interest in hockey and participation that you would remember a great player by the name of Black Jack Stewart who grew up in Pilot Mound, Manitoba.

I just wanted to share a little bit of this history because Manitoba has played a great part in hockey and contributed greatly to the game. We are all proud of it. I am happy to support the bill. I think that by adding this amendment that it is in itself a great symbolism of the way we do politics in this country because this is the quintessential Canadian compromise. You start off with a proposition that hockey should be named the national sport then people come in and say: "Now hold it. We have a history, we have a record. Lacrosse also has a lot of merit in this so why do we not reach the Canadian compromise and name lacrosse the summer national sport and hockey the winter hockey sport".

I think that is a great compromise and I am more than happy to support the bill.

National Sport ActPrivate Members' Business

6:55 p.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Kilger)

The member for Winnipeg-St. James brought the name of a former colleague in another life with the National Hockey League, Andy Van Hellemond, but let me tell you about one other because I am aging rather rapidly here by all accounts, none other than Red Storey. A few years ago a number of parliamentarians, including the member for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce who spoke earlier, came together to form a hockey team to play for a good charitable cause at the civic auditorium here in Ottawa against some National Hockey League oldtimers.

Lo and behold, in the middle of the game, for no apparent reason, Red Storey blew his whistle and stopped the play. Keep in mind that we had about 30 players on our bench. Red came over and said: "Look fellows, whatever you do don't quit your day jobs".

National Sport ActPrivate Members' Business

April 27th, 1994 / 6:55 p.m.


François Langlois Bloc Bellechasse, QC

Mr. Speaker, first I want to congratulate the hon. member for Kamloops whose perseverance will be rewarded in a few moments.

I also want to thank the hon. member for Mission-Coquitlam, who made a brilliant presentation on lacrosse, a sport which those who will read Hansard tomorrow will be able to learn more about. If the hon. member has more detailed personal notes on this topic, I would be pleased to read them. In the meantime, I wanted to highlight her contribution to the debate.

Later on this evening, most members will watch the hockey game between Montreal and Boston. As for me, I will probably go to Hull to watch the sixth game between the Hull Olympiques and the Chicoutimi Saguenéens of the Quebec junior major league. My interest in hockey stems more from my career as a journalist rather than from the limited skills I displayed on the ice. Indeed, I was better at writing about the game than at playing it. Early in my relatively short career as a journalist, I covered what was then junior A hockey in Canada, since major junior hockey did not yet exist.

I remember all the trips I made for the newspaper I was working for at the time and the playoffs I covered between teams which became famous. I could tell you stories that may have been forgotten in some areas, but are still much talked about in other places.

I covered games between the Quebec Remparts and another great hockey team, the Cornwall Royals, which also played in the Quebec major junior hockey league, and also the east-west finals between the Estevan Bruins and the Niagara Falls Flyers. What was funny about these finals was that both teams had the very same jersey, and I think it was the Niagara Falls Flyers organization which had to lend their visiting-team jerseys to the western team for the Memorial Cup Finals.

I want to point out that the Centennial Cup Series will start on Friday and will be held in Olds, Alberta. I want to wish the best of luck to the team that will be representing Quebec, the Châteauguay Élites, and may the best team win.

If it were not for all these men and women who drive their kids to the arena, or even an ice rink or somewhere else, and stay to entice their children to play their favourite sport, I do not think we would have a national sport. We talked about people playing in the heat and wearing extremely expensive equipment but there are still people playing outside in siberian cold like the ones we had last winter. We must pay tribute to those people of my generation who started playing hockey with elementary equipment, because that sport was for us the soccer of the North. We would build our nets with ice, use hockey sticks worth 59 cents and quite often make a puck out of frozen horse droppings. Imagine how interesting it would have been in the spring to have a slap shot at the member for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, if you will allow me a joke, Mr. Speaker.

I am pleased, in the name of the Bloc Quebecois and of all my colleagues since we share a common interest, whether we are from Quebec or Canada, regarding the two sports we are about to recognize, to support the bill introduced by the member from Kamloops, which we are going to pass unanimously.

National Sport ActPrivate Members' Business

6:55 p.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Kilger)

I must confess that I have been very pleased and honoured to have been in the chair throughout debate on this private member's bill. I congratulate the member for Kamloops. I also thank the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage for her diligence and work so that we might bring the bill to conclusion today.

The sports of hockey and lacrosse have played important roles in the development of my home town of Cornwall and the entire area of Stormont-Dundas. In naming names sometimes we forget someone, but let me go to the early 1900s. Two names that come to mind are Joe Lally and Newsie Lalonde, both of whom we will find in the Lacrosse Hall of Fame located in New Westminster, British Columbia. Of course Newsie Lalonde has also been inducted into the National Hockey League Hockey Hall of Fame.

Prior to the early 1960s the Roundpoint Chisholm lacrosse stick factory located on the Akwesasne Reserve manufactured 85 per cent to 90 per cent of the world's hickory lacrosse sticks. I really enjoyed being in the chair throughout the debate.

Pursuant to order made earlier this day, Bill C-212, as amended, is deemed read the second time and referred to committee of the whole, deemed considered in committee of the whole, deemed reported without amendment, deemed concurred in at report stage, deemed read a third time and passed.

(Motion agreed to, bill read the second time, considered in committee, reported, concurred in, read the third time and passed.)

It being 7.04 p.m. the House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 10 a.m. pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

(The House adjourned at 7.04 p.m.)