Growing Canadian sport: hockey and boxing

Canadian sports attract many participants and huge audiences. Hockey, played by 1.4 million Canadians, has become part of the national identity. Also, despite its relatively small population, this country has produced many world-class fighters at both professional and amateur levels.

Hockey is Canada’s favorite sport

Hockey is the most popular national winter sport among all Canadians. It is an integral part of Canada’s national identity as well as the country’s rich culture.

It has its origins in the 19th century, when various games with a stick and a ball, both from Great Britain and from native Canadians, influenced the emergence of the new game. The term “hockey” itself comes from the French word “hoquet,” meaning “shepherd’s horn,” an object used in the Scottish game in the 18th century.

These influences helped shape the modern form of Canadian hockey, which was first played indoors in Montreal, in 1875. Then came the annual hockey championships in Montreal as well. And the Stanley Cup, the oldest trophy in North American sport, began to be awarded to the best hockey teams.

In a country with so many different peoples, cultures, and languages, hockey is a unifying force that brings everyone together. It is also an internationally recognized sport and an Olympic sport in particular.

Canada competes with countries all over the world every year. The major professional league and the strongest and largest ice hockey association in North America and the rest of the world are the Canadian National Hockey League.

By 2000 the NHL had grown to 30 teams and has not expanded since. In 2002, Canada won its first men’s hockey title in 50 years at the Salt Lake City Olympics with NHL players. The Canadian team won another title at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, where standard-sized Canadian rinks were used.

Now the official Canadian sport of hockey is popular as a game and entertainment for people of all ages around the world. Team sports like ice hockey are often accompanied by ice hockey betting. Therefore bookmakers try to support the national teams. More formal betting and high-stakes competitions are typical for Vulkan MMA and horse racing.

Boxing

Boxing, both amateur and professional, has been practiced in Canada since before Confederation. Professional boxing was banned in Canada during the London Prizefighting era, but fights were still held outside of major cities in barns and farm fields.

Throughout UFC history there have been many Canadian fighters entering the Octagon some of whom are Ringside MMA, TFC Canadian MMA, or TKO Major League MMA Champion fighters:

  • Georges St. Pierre;
  • Marc Hominick;
  • Claude Patrick;
  • Rory MacDonald;
  • Carlos Newton;
  • Sam Stout;
  • Jason MacDonald

Canada has produced several world champion boxers, including heavyweights Tommy Burns and Lennox Lewis. The first recognized world champion boxer from Canada was George Dixon, a black resident of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Boxing is usually taught in independent gyms located in most major Canadian cities. Canadian boxers compete in the Olympics and often go professional.

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