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The Underrepresentation of French Canadians on English Canadian NHL Teams


  • Neil Longley

    (University of Regina)


Using a comprehensive data set covering the entire modern era of the National Hockey League (NHL), this article finds evidence that French Canadians have been underrepresented on English Canadian NHL teams, relative to their representation on U.S.-based teams. This underrepresentation on English Canadian teams was found not only for French Canadian players but also for off-ice personnel such as general managers and coaches. None of the traditional arguments as to why French Canadians may face entry barriers in the NHL can adequately explain the results of this article. The findings of the article give support to the hypothesis that French-English tensions may be resulting in English Canadian teams discriminating against French Canadian players. This hypothesis is given more credence when it is found that the degree of underrepresentation of French Canadians is greater during those NHL seasons when sovereigntist political threats in Quebec are highest.

Suggested Citation

  • Neil Longley, 2000. "The Underrepresentation of French Canadians on English Canadian NHL Teams," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 1(3), pages 236-256, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jospec:v:1:y:2000:i:3:p:236-256

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    Cited by:

    1. Scott Tainsky & Brian M. Mills & Jason A. Winfree, 2015. "Further Examination of Potential Discrimination Among MLB Umpires," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 16(4), pages 353-374, May.

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