National victory

It has been 17 years since the Stanley Cup, hockey’s highest honor, has belonged to a Canadian team. This is a sad sight, considering that hockey is Canada’s national sport. That is why the Montreal Canadiens’ victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins, the defending champions, was such a great victory not just for Canadien fans, but for the country as a whole.

Canadians have long been divided by languages, geography and hockey rivalries. The relationship between French-speaking Quebec (where Montreal is located) and the rest of the English-speaking provinces has been shaky at best, but Canadians should rejoice as a nation that any team has made it this close to the cup, regardless of historical differences.

The Stanley Cup belongs in the hands of the Canadians. Seeing it go to U.S. teams year-after-year, some of which are not from regions where hockey is popular, has become repetitive. Canadians should put linguistic, historical and geographical differences aside for the next few weeks as the Habs continue on their journey to capture the first Stanley Cup for Canada since the Canadians won it last in 1993.