By Cody Schott
Ice hockey used to be considered one of the major sports in America. There were NHL video games just like there were football and baseball ones. Going to a Kingâs game used to be a privilege, not an easy ticket. The thrill of a check against the glass or the siren sounding a goal used to touch peoplesâ hearts the same way that a home run or a touchdown does. But since the playersâ lockout during the 2004-2005 professional season, fewer people view the sport in the same way. Stadiums also seem to be emptier. The post-lockout era can characterize hockey as a game that has largely fallen out of favor.Jake Abrahams â09 is a fan of the Red Sox in baseball and the Patriots in football, but he is scrutinized constantly by his friends for his choice to play and follow hockey in a generation where hockey isnât as big as it used to be.Abrahamsâ interest in the sport developed before he started elementary school. While visiting relatives in Canada, he experienced the brutal sub-freezing temperatures from when ice hockey developed. Ponds were frozen, providing a perfect opportunity for him to take his first step to becoming a future hockey player.âI first learned how to skate on those ponds,â Abrahams said. âI found skating to be the greatest feeling in the world at that time.âAt 6, Abrahams began playing hockey. He is currently a goalie for the L.A. Hockey Club. The season so far, though, has not been to Abrahamsâ liking. The teamâs record is 14-22-3.Â Abrahams was not able to play for most of the season. In the first game, he tore his right quadriceps tendon and was forced to sit out for two months. Last year, the team won the Bantam AA USA Hockey National Championships, an event for hockey teams across the nation to compete with each other. He said that the tournament was âthe highest point of my playing career.âAbrahams, a goalie, enjoys having control over the outcome of the game and can be celebrated for the win or blamed for the loss. He acknowledges the pressure of his position and uses it to fuel himself and his play under pressure late in the game.âI love knowing that the outcome of the game usually rests on my shoulders,â Abrahams said.