Andrew Ference: Things I Have Learned #1

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About Andrew Ference

Andrew Ference is an eco-warrior, dad and NHL hockey star. Follow him on twitter @ferknuckle


  1. Great article Andrew……always been a big fan of your work on the ice and now as a writer….loved the “Can you be proud of yourself today?” and accountability part……..sharing this with my team in my old mans league to spark some life in them

  2. Tom Matlack says:

    Andrew welcome aboard my friend! We are so glad to have you.

    I like how you draw the analogy of sport to life in terms of accountability. I was not a pro like you but I did take sports seriously growing up and through college (and even now probably a little too much). In college and for a couple years afterwards I was an aspiring Olympic rower. The glamour event in rowing is the 8 person boat. The race is 2k meters and takes 6 minutes. You are facing the stern of the boat so you cannot see the other boats if they are ahead of this.

    The catch here is that no one in the boat can tell who is giving it their all and who is slacking off, in practice or in the heat of a race. Great crews, and great oarsmen, are built on trust in each other and an extremely high level of accountability. When a crew is down towards the end of a race and starts to make a move on the boat ahead you can literally see 8 rowers (and a cox) acting as one with a single mental consciousness. On the flip-side you can see boats that get crushed because there is no trust.

    My college rowing coach, who taught me more about manhood than just about anyone else, used to say that building trust is not as easy as it sounds. Sometimes it takes fist fights and challenges of one by another. It isn’t always pretty. But the result is always evident. And that’s how I try to live my life, even when no one is looking.

    • Tracey Lawler says:

      Hey Tom. Niall took up rowing for Dexter this past spring. May have him pick your brain about your experience next time he visits with Seamus. Hope all is well.


  3. Ron Cowie says:

    I tell this to both my kids and it is important to remember the rules apply to the grown ups

  4. Great article, Andrew. I’m with you on this sentiment 100%. You’ve always been among my favorite of the B’s squad, I hope to see you in Black and Gold for a long time to come.

  5. Nice stuff. Fine read. On with what it means to be a man …

  6. Great article Andrew,

    Being a father of two myself, I feel you better expressed in just a few paragraphs a humility lesson that I have been trying to teach both my kids since they are in age to understand.

    However, I think the lesson to my kids would have been complete if you had included some kind of apologies or a trace of remorse for that incident that my son and I saw you doing that night of April at the Bell Center.

    It’s never too late to right your wrongs.

    Have a good season.

  7. Mark Ellis says:

    in a recent political essay on a national website, because I was overanxious to get the story out, I got the identity and the quote of an important personage wrong. I was consequently drilled a new one very publicly, but that wasn’t the worst of it. I didn’t like what I saw in the mirror until I went back to the site and apologized in the comments section. That apology stands as the last comment.

    Its not precisely analogous to your middle finger salute, but about making it right after you’ve screwed up, and this piece made me think of it. . Welcome to the GMPM

  8. Excellent! what a well written piece. Class act all the way.

  9. Welcome, Andrew! A simple, timely and well-done essay. I like it for what it reminds us to hold as important.

  10. Sheesh… I’m a die-hard Blueshirt fan my whole life – my son’s middle name is Ranger, in fact – and even I’ve got to admit that was one thoughtful, considered and classy post. That said, I could not agree more with the above sentiments. Excellent words, eloquently spoken, sir. May you have fantastic year this upcoming season. (Just not at The Garden. LGR!)

  11. Congratulations Andrew on your first (of many, I hope) GMP piece, from a Calgary native and Flames fan. They have not been the same since you left. We lost more than a hockey player when you were traded. Love the tape on the mirror tip. Will share it around.


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