Biggest Dick Move Ever? Parent’s Memo Forces Girl To Quit Hockey Team
Hockey dads don't have the greatest reputation to begin with, and this won't help. Kayla Watkins, 12-year-old female hockey player for a co-ed team in Toronto recently quit - because she learned of a memo sent out by a team parent, which suggested that she accept reduced playing time "until her skating and shooting improve[d]"...or "find...a new team."
One problem with this, of course: the man who wrote the memo, George Atis, isn't a coach on the team. Another is the fact that the team, the Toronto IceDogs, is part of "minor hockey's lowest level of competitive play," according to the linked report from the Toronto Star. Yet another is the part where Atis also expresses worry about the locker room environment:
Atis also raised concerns about Kayla changing in the same locker-room as the boys, stating, "there have been many ‘near miss’ incidents where the boys have almost been exposed to Kayla."
This seems like an excuse so that Atis would have something in his memo besides simply calling Watkins out for her level of play. The reason: it's a co-ed team. If you don't want boys changing in front of girls, don't sign them up for a co-ed team. Atis will have you know, however, that he is far too good a parent for anyone to ever write a memo like this about his child:
"I lay the blame, if you must know, at the feet of [Kayla's mother] Vanessa Watkins...If it was my child, he would have never been in that position because I would not have put him on a team where he was not competing and where he was a liability to the team."
"Liability to the team." Again: "minor hockey's lowest level of competitive play." Also, the kids are 12. Winning and losing, though a part of the game, isn't really the most important point at that stage of things. Oh, and let's see what the actual coach of the team has to say about all this:
"There’s always complaints from parents about ice time but I’ve never seen an issue where it has gone this far before. I don’t know what they were trying to accomplish. It’s not an individual player losing a game. She made mistakes but so did others on the team. We’ve been the same since she left."
Hmm, but that would mean that Atis' memo is nothing more than overblown posturing from an overbearing parent trying to live vicariously through his child! How could that ever be?! Kayla, for her part, said:
"(Atis) is not my coach so I don’t know how he’s judging my play. If there’s something wrong, my coach should have talked to me, not him. And my coach never did."
Burn. In the slightest fairness to Atis, he said he didn't mean for Kayla Watkins to see the memo, and that the hurt she experienced is "the great shame in this process." However, there would have been a surefire way to prevent all that: accept her place on the team, and let that be that. It's like Atis himself said:
“This should have never come down to a singling out of Kayla in this fashion."
Apparently, he didn't believe that quite strongly enough.
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