Brodeur becomes American citizen

 

Teammate and fellow American Brian Rolston tried to put a little pressure Tuesday on New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur.

 
 
 
 
 

NEWARK, N.J. — Teammate and fellow American Brian Rolston tried to put a little pressure Tuesday on New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur.

“I heard he’s going to play goal for the U.S. team at the Olympics,” Rolston said, smiling. “And if he tries to play for Canada, I’m going to turn him in.”

Don’t worry, Canada, there’s nothing to be concerned about. Brodeur pledges to be standing on guard for thee, in a Canadian Maple Leaf jersey, at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

But he is now officially an American, as well as a Canadian.

Brodeur, the odds-on favourite to again be Canada’s starting goalie at the Winter Games, passed his U.S. citizenship test early Tuesday morning in Newark, then walked across the street to the Prudential Center and joined the Devils at their practice.

“You don’t have to worry about that,” Brodeur said to a suggestion that he might at some point consider playing for the Americans. “Whenever you play for a country, you can’t go back (and play for another). And I want to play for Canada. That’s where I’m from.”

Brodeur performed as well on his citizenship test as he has on the ice all these years. He was perfect. He answered his first six questions correctly, including one asking him to name the number of U.S Supreme Court justices. The answer, in case you were wondering, is nine.

“You had to get 60 per cent (on 10 questions), so I got my first six right and they stopped after that,” he said.

Brodeur said it just felt natural for him to formally apply for his U.S. citizenship. His children are all American citizens and other than the two months he spends in Quebec each summer, New Jersey has been his home for the past 17 years.

“All my kids are American first of all,” he said. “I make my home here. This is where I live most of the time and I think it was just a process. I went through getting a working visa, then a green card and the next step was to be able to be a citizen and I took the option to do it.”

Brodeur had to explain to his parents that he wasn’t renouncing his Canadian citizenship.

“My parents didn’t understand what it was exactly — they said you’re going to have to give up everything in Canada and it’s like you are going to get locked in the States. I said, don’t worry, you keep your dual citizenship. I still have my Canadian passport and everything is going to be all right. They were pretty happy about it. They know my life is here. All my grown up life has been here in New Jersey.”

Brodeur is just the latest in a long list of Canadian pro athletes who have taken up U.S. citizenship.

“Is he going to start for Team USA maybe?” Vancouver Canuck goalie Roberto Luongo said with a laugh — the Canucks face the Devils Wednesday.

Luongo, who figures to among Brodeur’s biggest competitors for the No. 1 job at the Olympics, said he could follow the same path once his hockey career is done.

“You know what, maybe eventually in the future,” said Luongo, a Montreal native whose off-season home is in Florida.

Vancouver Sun

bziemer@vancouversun.com
 
 
 
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