Prime Minister Harper Is A Habs Fan!


"I grew up a Toronto Maple Leafs fan, which means that come playoff time I only had Montreal to cheer for."

"J'ai grandi en étant un partisan des Maple Leafs de Toronto, ce qui veut dire que je n'avais que Montréal à supporter quand venait le temps des séries éliminatoires."

What? PM Stephen Harper is a Habs fan?

I couldn't believe my eyes either when I read this quote, because everyone knows, or thought they knew, that the Prime Minister is a devout Leafs supporter.

And he is, it seems, that is, until playoff time.

in which Harper compares Jaroslav Halak's current showing to Ken Dryden in 1971, revealed the above quote, among others.

An article at La Presse under the pen of Hugo De Grandpré

"It's a fantastic story," said Harper of Halak and the Canadiens, "I haven't seen anything like it since 1971 when my good friend Ken Dryden won the Stanley practically by himself. That's what Halak is doing now for the Canadiens. Let's see if he can keep it up."

Harper is currently out of the country on business, in Zagreb, Croatia. During a function, De Grandpré, standing with the PM, spotted a pair of Canadiens fans poudly wearing the jersey and hockey then became the topic of conversation.

"I noticed them as well," Harper pointed out. "It just goes to show that Canadiens fans show their allegiances everywhere, as you well know, across Canada or abroad. Maple Leafs fans do the same, perhaps in more timid fashion now given the time of year."

Harper, who is writing a book on hockey, is known as a big fan of the game. Like myself, he is a member of the Society for International Hockey Research (SIHR), and he contributed to the fund for a tombstone for James Creighton, regarded as the father of hockey in Canada.

Proof that Kevin van Steendelaar covers the english paper's sites as I simultaneously hit the french reads. Soon as this published, he pointed out this Globe and Mail article that eloborates a little more on Harper's views on the Habs from Croatia.

The picture at the top of this post is from my daughter's hockey team, three winters ago. Harper happened to be bringing his son to a practice at the same arena in the Sandy Hill district in Ottawa where my girl had a tournament game. A cavalcade of black SUV's with tinted windows pulled up, with Harper emerging, hockey bag in hand, and walked his kid into the arena, bodyguards at their side. He was asked to pose for a pic with the Cornwall Typhoons team. My daughter (93) is just below the PM, to his right.

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