Bobsleigh champ Humphries plays avid Leafs’ fan for a night
Yankees slugging legend Reggie Jackson earned the nickname “Mr. October” for his big hits in the playoffs.
Kaillie Humphries could well become “Ms. February.”
Okay guys, get your minds out of the gutter.
The moniker in this instance applies to Humphries’ ability to deliver clutch wins at the big events. Think about it: she won Olympic gold in women’s bobsleigh at just 24 years old and this past weekend in Lake Placid added a world title to her resume. Not only that, she won both times by whopping margins.
Considering that bobsleigh generally tends to favour the veteran pilot, the upside for Humphries as she heads towards the 2014 Sochi Olympics is impressive. Just don’t ask her to explain her ability for clutch performances when the stakes are highest.
“I have no idea,” she said. “I don’t know how I do it. I don’t know how it works. That part I can’t really tell you. I guess genetics, my mental makeup, how I’ve been trained, what I’ve learned. I’m a very pro-active person. If I don’t know something, I reach out to the best to try to figure it out.”
Humphries is in Toronto today with her latest hardware and will be taking in the Maple Leafs/New Jersey tilt tonight at the Air Canada Centre.
She may not want this to reach her friends out West, but she’ll be cheering for the Leafs.
“Born and raised in Calgary, I am a Flames’ fan,” she said. “But I will also say I am a Canucks’ fan because after the Olympics they were very sweet to me. Tonight, I will be a Leafs’ fan because they’re playing New Jersey. I’m Canadian, I’ve got to pick the home team. Tonight I’m an avid, huge Leafs’ fan.”
It’s mentioned to Humphries that the Leafs could maybe use a pep talk from a newly minted world champion.
“That’d be sweet. I’d love that.”
What would you tell them?
“Oh man, I don’t know, I’d have to think about about it. Kick ass? Play your hearts out? An athlete is an athlete. They’ve reached the position they’re in for a reason. You need to believe in that. They need to believe in each other as a team and they need to trust that everyone on the team is going to do their best for that night, for that moment, for that second. You’re giving your best and if everyone gives their best, the team will be the best. Trust in that. Believe in that. Do the job like you know how to do it.”