Truth & Rumors > NHL

United Arab Emirates, hockey hotbed

Views
3853
Comments
49

08:21 AM ET 08.01 | Most hockey fans believe there's never enough ice, but that is especially the case in some overseas countries. [Ice hockey] is also flourishing in regions many people might not imagine it. For example: in the United Arab Emirates and other Gulf States. Even though the temperature is hotter than 40C (100F) these days, there are quite some people who think about playing ice hockey despite the heat. Or one could say because of it. Winter sports have become trendy in the oil-rich country. ... The United Arab Emirates currently list 532 ice hockey players, including 40 female players. Four years ago there were only 195 players registered in the country. But the growth also brings problems with the existing infrastructure for ice sports.

IIHF.com

Abu Dhabi, Icon Sports Abu Dhabi, Icon Sports
August 1, 2011  08:35 AM ET

Words fail me. File this one under "What the...."

August 1, 2011  08:42 AM ET

This story will give the Buttgoblin all kind if crazy ideas.

Comment #3 has been removed
August 1, 2011  09:09 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

The interest in hockey in the UAE is only there because of the large number of American, Canadian and eastern European construction mercenaries (no disrespect meant) that are currently making a living there. Many of these workers bring there entire families with them to live there while they are on contract because the country is very safe by middle east standards.

When I saw they had women players, I figured as much.

August 1, 2011  09:17 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

The interest in hockey in the UAE is only there because of the large number of American, Canadian and eastern European construction mercenaries (no disrespect meant) that are currently making a living there. Many of these workers bring there entire families with them to live there while they are on contract because the country is very safe by middle east standards.

That makes sense Rex. It would be interesting to hear how many of the hockey players are natives.

August 1, 2011  09:23 AM ET
QUOTE(#5):

That makes sense Rex. It would be interesting to hear how many of the hockey players are natives.

My guess would be between zero and none.

August 1, 2011  09:46 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

When I saw they had women players, I figured as much.

I'd be hard to skate in a burka.

August 1, 2011  09:46 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

I'dd be hard to skate in a burka.

Fixed. lol

August 1, 2011  09:48 AM ET

Actually gents, I played hockey in UAE back in 2002 while serving overseas. for the Dubai Mighty Camels - who'm incidently are in the HHOF. The league consisted of 4 teams from various major cities, and yes the vast majority of players were Canadian and Americans that have work visas for that country. During my time, I knew of at least 20 UAE nationals playing. Calibre of hockey would be like men's industrial leagues.

August 1, 2011  09:49 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

It would be hard to skate in a burka.

Now it's fixed. hahahaha

I'm going to pay for that typo.

August 1, 2011  10:07 AM ET

"The United Arab Emirates currently list 532 ice hockey players, including 40 female players."

Now .... THAT'S what I call PROLIFIC! Take that, California!

August 1, 2011  10:07 AM ET

Read "Tropic of Hockey" by David Bidini and you also get hockey in China, Hong Kong, Transylvania as well as Dubai etc.

August 1, 2011  10:11 AM ET

I hear games last 3 minutes until the ice melts and then they teams switch over to water polo and combine the scores to determine a winner.

August 1, 2011  10:12 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

I'd be hard to skate in a burka.

I wouldn't be surprised to find the two Alexeis (Yashin & Kovalev) hiding under those burkas!

August 1, 2011  10:15 AM ET
QUOTE(#14):

I wouldn't be surprised to find the two Alexeis (Yashin & Kovalev) hiding under those burkas!

Or the Sedins?

August 1, 2011  10:19 AM ET

wow 500 some-odd hockey players. I have friends down in mexico city that play hockey...when there's a tounrament they usually get something like 10 teams from across the county...BEWARE...Mexico IS the hockey hotbed of tomorrow. Soon we'll be seeing the Coyotes playing in azteca stadium!

August 1, 2011  10:26 AM ET
QUOTE(#16):

wow 500 some-odd hockey players. I have friends down in mexico city that play hockey...when there's a tounrament they usually get something like 10 teams from across the county...BEWARE...Mexico IS the hockey hotbed of tomorrow. Soon we'll be seeing the Coyotes playing in azteca stadium!

You think they might have a complaint about transportation when coming to play in the US? I mean, we don't want to see hockey players twisting ankles climbing a fence.

August 1, 2011  11:23 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

Actually gents, I played hockey in UAE back in 2002 while serving overseas. for the Dubai Mighty Camels - who'm incidently are in the HHOF. The league consisted of 4 teams from various major cities, and yes the vast majority of players were Canadian and Americans that have work visas for that country. During my time, I knew of at least 20 UAE nationals playing. Calibre of hockey would be like men's industrial leagues.

ditto for the mexican hockey I spoke of. My mexican buds learned to play while they spent a year up here, but half of their team consists of canadian ex-pats on work contracts. I've played in a few tournaments with them while visiting...and the calibre is quite lousy!

August 1, 2011  11:25 AM ET
QUOTE(#13):

I hear games last 3 minutes until the ice melts and then they teams switch over to water polo and combine the scores to determine a winner.

one time while playing with the mexicans in Monterrey, Mex, the coolers blew and they lost the ice within a few hours...it was something like 40-45 celcius outside.

 
August 1, 2011  11:56 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

This story will give the Buttgoblin all kind if crazy ideas.

My first thought as well ! Quebec & Hamilton will be skipped over for UAE

Comment

Remember to keep your posts clean. Profanity will get filtered, and offensive comments will be removed.


Truth & Rumors

MOST POPULAR

  1. 1
    D'Antoni's newest 'blunder'
    Views
    2257
    Comments
    866
  2. 2
    Baseball's top 2015 free agent
    Views
    2084
    Comments
    527
  3. 3
    Shakeup looms for White Sox
    Views
    2535
    Comments
    171
  4. 4
    The NHL's model franchise?
    Views
    2070
    Comments
    139
  5. 5
    Cup drought weighing on Sid
    Views
    2360
    Comments
    107

SI.com

SI Photos