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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


January 25, 2003 - Issue 79


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Wheat Kings, City Honor Toots

credits: Photo courtesy Brandon Wheat Kings
Jordin Tootoo bobbleheadBrandon, Manitoba – The Western Hockey League’s Brandon Wheat Kings have honoured right-winger Jordin Tootoo for his outstanding Silver Medal performance at the 2003 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Both the club and City recognized the 19-year old Tootoo before Friday night’s (January 10th) game against the visiting Tri-City Americans at the Keystone Centre.

Tootoo, who was leading the league in scoring with 24 goals and 52 points in 29 games when he left for the National Junior Selection Camp last month, became the first member of the Wheat Kings to “medal” at the Tournament since Peter Schaefer helped lead Canada to a gold medal in 1997 with a 2-0 victory over the United States.

One of, if not the most popular player on this year’s Canadian entry, the fourth round draft choice of the National Hockey League’s Nashville Predators also became the first ever Nunavut born player to wear Canada’s colors at the World Juniors. In addition to handing out a number of bone rattling checks during the 10-day tournament, Tootoo scored a goal against the Czech Republic and assisted on Jeff Woywitka’s game winning goal against the Americans in last Friday’s sudden death semi-final.

Fans attending Friday night’s game brought noisemakers and banners in an effort to maintain the excitement created in Halifax by thousands of raucous fans – in honour of number 22.

In addition to the festivities scheduled for on the ice, the club introduced the “Jordin Tootoo” bobblehead doll at this weekend’s two games.

What are bobblehead dolls? They just happen to be hotter than the latest video game or Bruce Springsteen concert tickets. Across North America, they have people lining up for hours and adults acting like children, just to get their hands on one of these nodding pieces of ceramic.

Bobbleheads have actually been around since the 1950’s but the most recent bobble craze began when major league baseball’s San Francisco Giants gave away Willie Mays bobbleheads at a game in 1999. Since then, the bobblehead craze has flourished. Bobbleheads have been made of athletes, coaches and even mascots from virtually every sport although Tootoo is the first WHL star to be featured.

When the Seattle Mariners had an Ichiro bobblehead day, fans lined up for more than a day to get their hands on one of the 20,000 dolls up for grabs. There are now more than a million dolls being pumped out each month. Among the most popular “hockey” bobbleheads have featured such stars as Captain Canada Mario Lemieux of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Detroit’s Steve Yzerman and Joe Sakic of the Colorado Avalanche.

The cost to become one of the first fans to purchase a Jordin Tootoo bobblehead doll is $22 (taxes included).

Brandon, Manitoba Canada Map
Maps by Travel

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