the 2017-2018 edition of the salsa verde in la ligue élite, a sister league of the lfa. (photo frederic serre)

Whether it’s hockey, baseball, football or any other amateur or professional sport, team spirit is essential for the success of any formation, without it, the chances of winning and going all the way are very low and close to zero.

Over the years we have seen a few teams in several sports composed of individuals with so little in common that one could hear the flickering neons of their silent locker-room since no one talked to one another. Yes, some manage to hoist the championship cup at arm's length in the end but the examples are rare. That it happens at the professional level is one thing but at the recreational level it seems to me that we are missing out on a great chance to grow, to build relationships and to maximize our enjoyment if we do not make the effort to build team spirit by investing a little of ourselves in the sauce.

Obviously there was a time when there were less electronic gadgets to distract us and the group spirit was stronger. It's proven ! We live in a time where we are with everyone except those with whom we share the room and that is the problem in my opinion. People seem to have lost their way to get in touch with each other in real time. This has a societal impact that is multiplied by 10 when one finds oneself in a team sport before or after the prescribed activity. More than ever people live in their bubble which certainly has some advantages but has adverse effects when trying to act as a group towards a common goal. The few incursions in the locker room of professional or junior teams by television cameras are striking. Human beings in the prime of life, living an exhilarating period with nothing to say that prefer to embed themselves in their cell phone like a carp. You would think that one day human-beings might lose the ability to talk since people are afraid to answer their phone or engage in a conversation. What do they fear exactly ?!

The era in which we live brings a serious problem for group activities, but we can remedy this by sharing who we are with others. Not all people are perfect, super funny, intelligent or cultivated like an atlas, we are what we are with our life baggage so why not share it by exchanging with others? That's what makes the human experience alive and exhilarating!

The idea for these few lines came from a locker-room photo taken by Larry, a member of the Hackers and vice-president of hockey operations and dean of discipline of our league. But on Thursday nights he plays in the Elite league, a sister league of the LFA. His team of old timers of sorts is tightly wound and it’s not because they have been part of the same team for ages, because just like the LFA, teams are rebuilt season after season.

(Larry’s parenthesis)

"The higher average age in this league may be a factor, but that does not prevent guys from checking their phone from time to time believe me!

In fact, technology can and should help to cement team spirit. In the case of this team, by exchanging e-mails during the week or by creating a FaceBook page for the team (in the Hackers case) ... It allows not only to talk hockey but also just to goof around a bit ... A bit like what should be happening in the room actually ... A good way to keep the team spirit alive between games and include everyone, even the absents or those who speak less in the room. Also, many teams reward the player of the game in one way or another by giving him a fun symbolic prize…

There will always be guys who get to the rink when the Zamboni is on the ice and who leave without taking their shower as soon as the game is over, this is a very extreme example but it exists even if it is rare! For my part when I can do it, I prefer to arrive well ahead of time and enjoy this unique space-time where the outside world becomes accessory. No need to have a loud mouth and chatter all the time, to each his trip, his ritual ... as they say, the important thing is to participate !!! ... "

... back to JF ....

We must also realize that despite all its benefits, this ubiquitous technology can dehumanize us and just like pollutants in the atmosphere, in the end, poison us.

May those who read this manifesto for a stronger and healthier team spirit change the game. Not just for this season but for the rest of your careers because even though several rooms are often united across the many leagues I have played in, others sometimes seem "soso" when we are all there to PLAY TOGETHER! They say, a team that stands together has fun in both victory and defeat. That's what makes the experience of being part of a LIVELY UNITED team extraordinary, it leaves us with lasting memories that are priceless!


We often receive invitations to participate in tournaments as you know but this one stands out and seems very interesting. Here are the details, those interested, let me know and we'll see if we can organize a little road trip with some extra perks.
The Nashville tournament this year will be the first weekend of June, from the 1st to the 3rd. There are two options available:
1) Tournament fees only ($ 1799 USD per team)
2) Package that includes tournament and hotel ($ 400-430 USD per person)


Since LFA management is always planning ahead, each year it sets up games to see rookies in action wanting to break into montreal’s premier adult hockey league. This year is no exception and that is why Sunday, March 18th at 6 pm will be held our first 2018 rookie game. We will definitely need some regular players to take part in this game as well as players who want to act as scouts. Contact the league by email if you are interested.


Following Saturday’s draw of a pair of tickets to see a hockey game, it is Francis Gingras who won the prize because he was part of a list of players who registered before the March 1st deadline. Congratulations to Francis and a big thanks to everyone who registered before that date to help the LFA administration to do its job in anticipation of the next two seasons.


Despite many efforts and countless phone calls we have not been able to solve the problem of the sound system of the arena that will require an additional investment that the league is not able to do for the moment. We hope to find a solution with the college by our next games on March 24 as we will be playing in Pierrefonds Saturday, March 17. It's time to plan how you will travel because it's always more fun to go with the gang when we play on the road ;)

Play to play !!