U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (Ill.) is a firm believer in a direct link between playing hockey and good outcomes in the lives of its players.
Quigley, the co-chair of the Congressional Hockey Caucus, hosted a briefing Thursday to discuss the positive impacts of hockey on educational achievement and rehabilitation for veterans.
"Hockey is for everyone," said Quigley. "The mission of the Congressional Hockey Caucus is to make sure communities across the country have access to skates, sticks and rinks so they can reap the benefits of active and healthy lifestyles."
Quigley also hosted a roundtable discussion along with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Hockey Hall of Famer Pat LaFontaine and representatives from USA Hockey.
"When it comes to hockey, Congressman Quigley not only talks a good game, he plays one," said Bettman. "It was a pleasure to join him this morning to discuss the many ways hockey in the United States has grown, has contributed to the community and has served so vital a role in people's lives."
Quigley, a Chicago Blackhawks fan, will join the team for a reception at the White House celebrating their Stanley Cup championship on Friday.
For our team, as a group, we've never been this far before, and so it's just more lessons learned, and sometimes you have to go to the school of hard knocks to find out what works and what doesn't. We've got a young group. They've played some unreal hockey here to get us this far, and we showed if we're not going to play the proper way, a really, really good hockey team is going to beat you, and that's what they did. It's a lesson learned.
— Lightning coach Jon Cooper after Rangers win in Game 6 forced a Game 7 that will be played at Madison Square Garden on Friday