December 6, 2019

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Mayor drops mitts in defence of city's reputation

“And really, I do ask, who are these fragile hockey players who play a winter sport but can’t handle a little winter?" Brian Bowman said. (Mikaela MacKenzie / Free Press files)</p>

“And really, I do ask, who are these fragile hockey players who play a winter sport but can’t handle a little winter?" Brian Bowman said. (Mikaela MacKenzie / Free Press files)

Brian Bowman might never be mistaken for a hockey enforcer, but he's not afraid to the drop the gloves when it comes to standing up for his city.

The mayor came out swinging Wednesday, a day after poll results of NHL players rocked Winnipeg like a hit from behind. 

Winnipeg least-favourite city among visiting NHL players, U.S. survey reveals

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Jets captain Blake Wheeler skates with teammate Mark Scheifele trailing during practice at Bell MTS Place. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)
Jets captain Blake Wheeler skates with teammate Mark Scheifele trailing during practice at Bell MTS Place. (Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press files)

Posted: 05/11/2019 2:45 PM

NHL players on visiting teams hate playing in Winnipeg, and it has little to do with wins and losses.

An ESPN poll released Tuesday asked 50 players a series of irreverent questions, including which of the league's 31 cities they dreaded visiting most.

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The ESPN poll of 50 anonymous NHLers found 42 per cent of them (21 players) cited Winnipeg as the road city they dreaded visiting the most.

Said one player: ""Winnipeg. It's always cold. Tough rink to play in. It's just dirty — you walk around the city and feel like you need to wash your face after you go outside. So nothing about it is very exciting."

To that, Bowman dished out a little payback, taking time out from a question-and-answer session on crime and politics with reporters.

"I’ve seen the faces of some of the players on other teams, and for at least 42 per cent of them, washing their faces is not going to make an improvement. And really, I do ask, who are these fragile hockey players who play a winter sport but can’t handle a little winter?

"I was thinking maybe I would suggest some local facial products that would help with their cleansing needs but I don’t think for 42 per cent of them it’s going to make a difference. There’s only so much you can do with soap and water with some of these faces."

 

Aldo Santin

Aldo Santin
Reporter

Aldo Santin is a veteran newspaper reporter who first carried a pen and notepad in 1978 and joined the Winnipeg Free Press in 1986, where he has covered a variety of beats and specialty areas including education, aboriginal issues, urban and downtown development. Santin has been covering city hall since 2013.

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