Hockey tournament features players at least 80 years old
Published Sunday, February 24, 2013 4:47PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 25, 2013 5:00PM EST
There was a different kind of hockey tournament played in the Capital Sunday afternoon.
Unlike Saturday’s Battle of Ontario between the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs, there was no serious rivalry going on.
But, players did have to be at least 80 years old.
“I have more trouble getting up and down steps then I do on the ice,” said Bob Vezina.
“It keeps me busy,” said John Kokhl. “I’d go nuts if I didn’t do something in the winter.”
More than 30 players made up the teams from Ottawa-Gatineau and Saint-Hubert, QC.
Organizers said there is a need for a tournament like this in the region.
“We have 27 groups of old timers 50 [years old] and up in this region plus we found five more,” said Maurice Marchand. “That’s about 750 players playing old-time hockey.”
The game was also a Guinness World Record attempt for the first-ever game between two teams where every player is at least 80 years old.
“I have a hard time walking three blocks but I can skate for a couple of hours and it doesn't bother me,” said Hubbie Garneau.
“My daughter lives in Ottawa. Her and her family will be here to see me and boy…I’m at the Stanley Cup,” said Guy Henri.
His supporters, as well as many others, packed the stands at the University of Ottawa’s rink.
“I keep in good shape, I’m still working I’m doing extra work here and there,” said Jean-Paul Valois.
“A lot of us have ailments but we're playing through them because you do what you can as long as you can,” said Bob Russell.
Even though there is friendly competition about who wins, players said there is a lot of sportsmanship along the way.
“When we fall down they always help you get up,” said Vezina.
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Katie Griffin
A nearly empty hockey stick rack in the Buffalo Sabres locker room is shown at the First Niagara Center, home of the Buffalo Sabres NHL hockey team, in Buffalo, N.Y., Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2012. (AP / David Duprey)