Some hockey players are smiley:


Some are short:


Some are tall:


Some are inked and tatted:


Sometimes they can be aggressive:


Sometimes they get injured:


But they can be really silly:


Some are amused by Cabbie:


Some really like food….:


Sometimes we are just left to wonder about them….:


But there’s a lot of emotion in all of them no matter what team:

And it’s kinda nice.

4

“Some of the guys have started to call me Coach Duper. I laugh it off, but it’s killing me to wear my little suit while they’re putting on their gear. I’m 35. I know I don’t have much time left. But I’m getting out of that press box prison. I don’t care if it takes six months, or a year, or two years. I will get healthy. I will play in the National Hockey League again.”
-In My Blood, Pascal Dupuis 

Players who have known Dupuis for a long time — Sidney Crosby, Marc-Andre Fleury, Chris Kunitz — stop to talk to reporters on their way out to the bus. So does Johnston.

Crosby’s conversation was particularly striking. He’s standing in front of a bright red cinderblock wall, sweating from having just stepped off the ice, holding his helmet in his hand. After he answers a few questions, I ask if he can put into words what Dupuis has meant to him as a teammate and a friend.

He says he doesn’t think he can get through the answer without breaking up. He musters a few sentences, obviously choking back tears.

Reporters act like human beings — we don’t always — and don’t ask any more questions. Crosby walks away a few steps and stops just around the corner. He waits until Fleury’s interview is done and calls me over. He has composed himself and wants to give an answer. It’s important to him.

Here’s what he said: “The main thing that comes to mind is just a character guy. No matter the situation, when things were good or bad, you knew he was going to show up every night. You knew he was going to have great energy. Nothing that he got was ewasy. He earned everything he got right from junior hockey on. He always had that mentality. That’s what made his so successful over his career. His ability to get the most out of himself and his ability to be a good teammate were probably his greatest traits, I think.”

—  Chipped Ice: The Dupuis scene