Last year was the first time in nearly 50 years that no teams from Canada qualified for the NHL playoffs.
This year, our northern brethren responded with gusto, and Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, and Calgary all made it in.
All five teams were pitted against American opponents, which led to renditions of ‘O Canada’ and ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ before every game.
It appears that fans in Edmonton were listening because, last night, when a performer’s microphone didn’t work, the entire crowd at Rogers Place sang the words to the U.S. anthem.
Not to lambast my fellow Americans, but I couldn’t perform all of the Canadian national anthem in a similar situation. Could you?
That said, Canadian fans have a tradition of collectively singing anthems, which originated in Edmonton as well. In a series in 2006, also against the Anaheim Ducks, the crowd responded tremendously when performer Paul Lorieau held out his microphone for them to join him in their national anthem.
Since then, it’s become a regular occurrence. So maybe they were prepping and hoping one day for a chance to do it for America.
Either way, they nailed it.