This last game, game 7, of the Stanley Cup epic of 2011 was a tough one to watch. Not because Vancouver lost, but because I had lost…lost faith. Or maybe I’ve just misplaced it for a while.
My son calls me no fan at all. I failed to name (first and last names) of five players. Oh sure, I could come up with a few, and I had a lot of last names…but the first names eluded me…except for the name Roberto Luongo. That’s because Roberto is the cause of my loss of faith.
Sure, he was a bust in Boston…and he was less than spectacular in game 7, but it’s because I found out just how much money the Vancouver goalie makes. And, it just doesn’t seem right. It especially doesn’t seem right tonight. Roberto, who looks like a great kinda guy and has an equally great looking brother with a spectacular family resemblance…a brother who just happens to be Roberto’s goalie coach, and is about a foot shorter than the goalie himself , well Roberto gets paid a heckofa lot of money in his job. I just can’t reconcile it. Especially tonight.
Reportedly Luongo gets $10 million a year, or about $800,000 a month or about $200,000 a week, or about $29,000 a day. That’s $29,000 in one day… about the same the amount of money some people in Canada make (at minimum wage) in a year.
“Ma, that’s professional sports,” my son says with a shrug and a raised eyebrow which I translate to mean “Don’t you know anything about sports?” And, he’s right. I just don’t get that part. Of course I think excellence- in anything- should be rewarded. And I really “get” rewarding celebrity- although I’m a little conflicted about it all.
Perhaps tonight the Vancouver goalie’s $10 million is cold comfort. And I feel for the kid- and all the others who put their heart into the series and came up empty handed in Game 7. But I can’t help thinking about the people who are working a full year to make the kind of money that’s being made in one day on- or off the ice in other places.