Home Hockey jerseys Chinese-language sports reporter spreads love of hockey among Chinese Canadians

Chinese-language sports reporter spreads love of hockey among Chinese Canadians


When Brian Wong moved from Hong Kong to Calgary almost thirty years ago as a teenager, he said he “felt like a foreigner” because most of his college peers were talking about a game he knew nothing about.

An avid sports enthusiast, he discovered that “the conversation in the hall was all about hockey, and I became determined to learn as much as possible about the game,” he said. Dawn Alberta.

It was, he recalls, a way of integrating into Canadian society. Wong said he would get $ 5 tickets to games at the supermarket “and sit nosebleed at the Saddledome with my friends and watch all the games.”

Now, Wong is striving to attract more Chinese immigrants to the game he has grown to love.

He works part-time for the Calgary Flames, producing digital content in a mix of English and Cantonese telling stories about the team, its games and hockey culture in general. He also talks hockey in Chinese on his popular podcasts.

Stories feature players, pre-season roundups, upcoming games, or topics like special effects used during games. Wong said the video is popular “because it’s show and tell, and we have a lot of local and even international viewers.”

“Its culture goes beyond the stadium”

He said there is a growing interest in hockey among Chinese speaking immigrants in Calgary.

“They now follow the news, the matches and they even analyze the games. In Calgary, newcomers wearing Flames jerseys or hockey jerseys in general are very common, ”said Wong.

“There are teams made up of immigrants from East Asia who play in bright leagues, beer leagues or non-contact leagues, but not a lot. But playing is a different thing as they fear possible injuries. ”

Wong said he tries to get his predominantly Cantonese and Mandarin audience to connect with hockey using sports terms the audience is familiar with, some of which are taken from football.

“Hockey is not an easy sport to watch and understand for a spectator. They wonder why there are offside, why there are line changes, why penalties are imposed, body checks and why they are fighting, ”Wong said. “Using their own language, I can explain a complex situation.

“Learning Canadian sport is part of the process of integrating an immigrant’s journey. Ice hockey is the national sport. His culture goes beyond the stadium and he opens the door to Canadian society.

Broadcasting and podcasting

Wong has been a professional Chinese language radio sports presenter in Canada for 21 years, covering a variety of sports.

Her first major assignment was the 2001 Athletics World Championships in Edmonton, followed by the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship, also in Edmonton.

He said he started paying more attention to hockey after the Flames reached the Stanley Cup Final in 2004. He now produces his own podcasts and publishes them under his FeverSports label.

But it was not possible to get Chinese comments to the level that Hockey Night in Canada in Punjabi has reached. Wong said he had not been able to attract sponsors to pay the fees.

He hopes that with the introduction of ice hockey in mainland China, the popularity of the game will also increase in the national community.

Growing interest in China

Next year’s Winter Olympics are hosted by China. The home country ice hockey team has automatically qualified for the group round and wants to ice a competitive team.

During a pre-COVID trip to China with the Flames, Wong said he saw considerable interest in the game, as NHL games are now broadcast live there.

“We spent time talking to the players, coaches, kids and parents and found that there was a lot of interest,” he said. “Parents are willing to pay for their kids to attend hockey camp and learn the game, and some of the practice and play facilities are of a very high standard.

The NHL has been actively promoting the sport in China since 2017, training coaches and helping to build facilities. Big teams have also played games in China trying to popularize the sport.

But the biggest boost will come, Wong said, when a Chinese-Canadian becomes a big hockey star.

“We need a Yao Ming-esque phenomenon, so the kids will all want to play,” he said.

“Overall, I want people to feel the joy of watching a game live, cheer on your team and have a sense of belonging.”

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here