And here's the latest 10-year trends:
I have no idea why hockey participation numbers would surge 60 percent in one year. My best guess is that the survey the last few years either was flawed or incomplete.
What remains interesting -- and as I wrote last year -- is that ice hockey still lags behind sports such as muzzle loading, paintball and kick boxing. All three of those, I might add, make hockey look like a downright intellectual pursuit.
Muzzle loading is for dummies who can't get their thrills out of modern firearms, paintball is for those who wish they could shoot someone legally and kick boxing is for those who are already brain damaged and would like to become more so.
If I missed the story, please email me or leave a comment if you know why hockey participation has increased. Don't get me wrong -- I'd love to see the sport expand so there are more opportunities for everyone to play. I just don't see the numbers exploding at my local rink in Pasadena, which by the way is threatened with closure because the dumb-ass City Council doesn't think many people like to skate or play hockey.