The Creator’s Game

My high school classmates from Six Nations called it “God’s country”, and it’s never been too hard to see why: a river, forests, dark night skies and pretty good farmland. It’s what remains of a huge grant of land along Ontario’s Grand River by the British crown to the Haudenosaunee, the league of the Iroquois. As part of my Canadian summer gotta-do list, I went to watch lacrosse with an old friend who loves this indigenous gift to the sporting world more and more, though he was mainly a hoopster when I first knew him. Here is an athletic

Actor Graham Greene joins Tom Longboat and E. Pauline Johnson among the best-known people from Six Nations — unless you know lacrosse.

context in which the Aboriginal community that I know best takes enormous pride, and a backseat to nobody. The Junior A loop in Ontario has become an Iroquois league of its own.

My hometown of Caledonia sits next to the reserve, and you may have heard that the relationship between the two communities has been a little rocky, suburban developers and Native land activists finding their paths and their words clashing. This isn’t about that; there’s more on the dispute here, if you like. Still, it’s been awhile since I was on Six Nations.

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Canadian Lacrosse Meets World Basketball

I had just finished watching the game when I received Karl’s message. The United States, led not by one-name celebrities like Kobe and LeBron but by the gifted young star, Kevin Durant, defeat Turkey to win the quadrennial FIBA championship. Order has been restored (again), and the Americans re-asserted their claim to the summit of the world’s basketball heap. This was not the “Redeem Team”, the collection of NBA royalty that brought the Olympic Gold back to the United States from Beijing after the humiliation of a bronze medal in 2004. (After a long tradition of Olympic gold, the Americans silvered in a controversial final-game loss to the Soviets in 1972, and bronzed in 1988, the last time they sent a group of college kids into the five rings. The famous “Dream Team” of 1992 – Larry, Magic, Michael, et al. – was supposed to signal the return of never-ending American mastery as the United States could thenceforth send its top professionals.)

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