Jack Todd: These tough times need heroes – in hospitals – and in the field

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Warriors’ Steph Curry broke the NBA’s 3-point record thanks to his determination and hard work, and helped us through this miserable epidemic.

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There was snow on the ground in Montreal on Monday morning.

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Not much, just enough to sparkle, purify and promise something like the holidays we remember, the Christmases that “roll towards the sea with two tongues, like a cold and fleeing moon rolling over the sky that was our street”.

You could imagine yourself standing in front of the snowy window neck and neck with Dylan Thomas, looking at the strip of white stretching all the way to the back fence and beyond (scotch in hand, of course) and dipping your hands in. snow to bring out anything you might find.

The snow could not fall better. You now know the Canadiens haven’t played on Saturday night and won’t be playing for at least next week. You know the NHL is probably in need of a three week shutdown, that getting to the Olympics is a potential nightmare, and there is every reason in the world for these Games to be postponed or canceled altogether, despite the cost. for our athletes.

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We’re almost two years into this miserable plague, caught in an ellipse of hope and despair that has left everyone exhausted, weary and cranky. Just when you thought you were free it comes back again, like a drunk guest who missed his cab and decided to spend the night snoring on your couch.

In the old days, respected people in the sports world would laugh at themselves in public, so that you wonder if the pandemic has affected their judgment.

Our old friend Richard Pound, once a maverick who does not bow down to anyone, now joins the IOC party line despite China’s dismal human rights record, calling criticism of China ” idiots ”.

Steve Yzerman, one of the NHL’s brightest men, betrays an understanding of this scourge comparable to that of an evangelical pastor in Florida.

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Hero? If they are found, it is not in the world of sport, but in hospitals. Post after post, week after week, now year after year. Risking their own lives in the intensive care unit where terrified patients who refused vaccines die on their own.

In the midst of it all, I spent far too much time trying to calculate exactly when Golden State Warriors’ Steph Curry would break Ray Allen’s three-point record before predicting, with precision, that the record would be Curry’s at mid-December. It’s an old habit, like trying to figure out when Hank Aaron would catch Babe Ruth, but old habits die hard.

It happened this week at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Needing just two more three-pointers to break Allen’s record of 2,973, Curry knocked him out in the first five minutes, the record-breaking shot coming from a pass from Canadian teammate Andrew Wiggins.

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After decades of watching and covering sports, it takes a lot to bring tears to my eyes. The last time I remember it was watching my friend, cyclist and speed skater Clara Hughes, win a gold in the 5,000 meters in Turin. I had much the same reaction seeing Curry kiss Allen after breaking his record.

It was a great moment for a transformative player. Not since Ruth started throwing baseballs at Yankee Stadium has a player changed a sport so much. When Reggie Miller (who commented on the game and still ranks third on the all-time roster) entered the league in 1987, NBA players averaged five three-pointers per game.

It’s now up to 34 per game, thanks to Curry. As a fan since the days of Oscar Robertson and Bill Russell, I’m not sure that’s a good thing – but like watching Aaron hit homers, it’s fun to see Curry hit from almost anywhere. How far.

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A somewhat small and underrated point guard upon entering the league, Curry set the record through determination and hard work. It’s the NBA, after all – it’s not enough to be able to hit from really far, you have to break free from stubborn, long-armed defenders. To do this, Curry runs and runs and runs again, using his speed and stamina to break free for the split second he needs to bury a 25-foot shot.

“I think fans are drawn to him just because of his humility and his history and how hard he had to work,” said Curry coach Steve Kerr. “It transcends sport. “

At a time when we need it more than ever, Curry has succeeded. In doing so, he helped some of us to get by.

Things have been difficult and they are going to get more difficult. We will need all the courage and patience we can show to get through this. Do well this holiday season. Stand close to those you love, please – and be kind to those you don’t.

Hero: Max Pacioretty, Jonathan Drouin, Peng Shuai, Simone Bilès , Sergio Aguero , Sir Lewis Hamilton &&&& Last but not least, Steph Curry, the three-point artist who transformed basketball.

Zeros: Richard Pound, the IOC, Steve Yzerman, Aaron Rodgers , Evander kane , Tyler bertuzzi , Kyrie Irving , Jacques Paul , Claude Brochu, David Samson &&&& last but not least, Jeffrey Loria. Now and forever.

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twitter.com/jacktodd46

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