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How Christian Olympian Eric Staal Puts God First

Screenshot from CBC News via YouTube

How Christian Olympian Eric Staal Puts God First

By Movieguide® Staff

Despite the NHL and NHLPA’s decision to forego participation in the upcoming Winter Olympics in Beijing, China, Canada plans to send a men’s hockey team led by 37-year-old veteran Eric Staal.

After a loss in the Stanley Cup Finals back in July, Staal had taken a break from the NHL, making the center eligible for the Olympics.

Despite the circumstances, Staal is confident in the Canadian team, which features other famous players from Canada like Mason McTavish, Jack McBain, and Owen Power.

“This seems like a great group. Love the look and the balance we have,” Staal told The Canadian Press.

Canada won the Olympic Gold in 2010 and 2014. After his win in 2010, Staal became a member of the unofficial “Triple Gold Club” for players who won the Olympic Gold, the world championship, and a Stanley Cup.

Staal is the oldest of four brothers, and said that he remembers the foundation of faith that helped him pursue Hockey.

“Any time you move away from home — especially at a young age — you just never know what to expect,” Eric told Promise Keepers Canada in 2018. “I was only 15 when I first [started playing on a junior hockey team], but was fortunate enough to get involved with the chapel program there, which set me on my way.”

“Obviously nowadays our schedules are pretty jam-packed,” he continued. “My wife and I do enjoy getting together with others outside of church for small group studies or reading sessions, but sometimes that doesn’t work out with me having games and practices nearly every day. So just sitting down with some teammates and the chapel leader is another great alternative if I can’t make it out to church back home.”

Staal also supports Hockey Ministries International, which seeks to help spread the Gospel to the world through the sport of Hockey.

“Hockey season is always a busy time — it’s a long year and sometimes it’s tough to find that study time, but when I do, it’s always great and refreshing,” Staal told Promise Keepers. “It’s a chance to try to live our lives for God and show our fans and teammates that there are better things up above. It just becomes a way of life after enough time.”

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