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An injured girl lies on the side of the road, as she is attended to after an earthquake hit Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo)

Last night, Montreal Canadiens enforcer Georges Laraque dedicated his first goal as a Hab "to all the Haitians who are looking for (family and friends)."

Your question of the day: Do you think this little girl in the photo -- or any others searching within the mass devastation of Haiti right now -- give a damn?

To backtrack a bit: Laraque is of Haitian descent. His parents were born there, and he still has relatives who reside on the island. One would correctly assume that he would be extremely concerned about the ongoing rescue efforts. And naturally, sports media, who live to tie their trite existence to something with far more gravitas, grabbed ahold of this story with both hands. In short: Georges scored a big goal, and that should make everyone feel a bit better about a monumental disaster that's likely killed thousands of people. Of course, the press ate it up. From Elliotte Friedman's Twitter feed:

"That goal by Laraque was his first as a Canadien -- and his first shot on goal all year. After Haitian earthquake, it's a nice moment."

And from La Presse's Marc Antoine Godin:

"HABS WIN 5-3: George Laraque scores his first goal as a Canadien. 'With all that happens in Haiti, it couldn't happen at a better time.'"

(Stevenson's tie-in story in its entirety can be found at the first link above.)

Hey boys, you know what was a nice moment that couldn't have happened at a better time? The NHL's decision to donate $100,000 to UNICEF for Haitian relief.

I don't want to crack on Laraque too much, because I don't know if he's planning any additional efforts or fundraising on his own. But last night's post-game events -- particularly the media's fawning and their aggravating attempts at a tie-in -- really rubbed me the wrong way. Scoring a goal may have lifted Laraque's heart, but it did nothing for the emotions or the massive burden of the Haitian people. I know it's a stupid thing to ask of sports, but please -- try and keep it in perspective.

More later.

6 responses to "Hockey goals for Haiti?"

  1. I know Georges meant well, but you are right in that his comments reflect how detached from reality you can get when living in the pro sports bubble. He would have been better off playing this low key, but that isn't how he rolls.

    Dennis Prouse

  2. Mind you, if his goal (no pun intended) was to redirect everyone's attention toward the quake in the only real way he possibly could, not a total failure.


  3. Anonymous:

    I suppose, but if you read C.J.'s piece, Laraque was wondering if he should actually head down to the island to assist. Now, assuming that he would be granted permission by the Habs to do so, that move would have garnered an enormous amount of coverage -- far more than any goal dedication.

    The Universal Cynic

  4. laraques goal = earthquake awareness.
    i think that's ok. not the biggest gesture ever, but it counts. i wonder how many hockey viewers had it on their minds before he said that.


  5. It's a monstrous story, Brk, with many countries kicking in millions of dollars in aid. If it wasn't on the minds of hockey viewers before the goal, they must live a very sheltered life.

    The Universal Cynic

  6. Laraque's actions don't come close to matching the scale of the issue.. i get that. it's still "something", though.. not deserving of the "fawning", as you called it, although if you look at it relative to what any other player has publicly done..

    but i know what you're saying. his actions didn't do much justice.