Hobby Outposts from The North: Canada’s greatest athlete / doctor: Every year in Canada, a particular athlete is named as the best in our country and is given the Lou Marsh Award. This year, two athletes were named as recipientsAlphonso Davies, who had an incredible year on the pitch once again, and perhaps the most heartwarming OL to come across the gridiron in decadesLaurent Duvernay-Tardif.

D-T made headlines as one of the most unique stories during the Kansas City Chiefs’ run to the Super Bowl in 2020. He was a standout on the field as part of the dangerous offensive line, but it’s his “side career” that piqued interest.

You see, Duvernay-Tardif, while building his football profile at McGill University, was also studying medicine. While he was drafted in 2014 by KC in the sixth round, he continued his studies across eight years. The story of a licensed doctor playing in football’s biggest game made top-story buzz across North America, as one might expect.

After achieving ultimate success of hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy (and carrying the Canadian flag on the field in celebration), focuses shifted for Duvernay-Tardif. It feels like ages ago already, but that Super Bowl game was one of the last major North American sporting events to take place before Covid-19 arrived on our shores and put a halt to the sporting world.

While the NFL resumed practice and play virtually on par with its normal schedule, D-T opted out of play for the Chiefs. At the time, he was working as an orderly at a long-term care home and was also preparing to enter Harvard’s famed medical program.

Duvernay-Tardif’s decision may, in any other year, have sent shockwaves through the NFL; but in 2020, his decision can be regarded as nothing else but heroic. To walk away from the game (at least temporarily) in the prime of his career to put priority on helping those in need of medical support is remarkable.

The recognition by the Lou Marsh selection committee accompanies other accolades for Duvernay-Tardif. He was named  one of Sports Illustrated’s Sportspersons of the Year, and earlier in 2020 his scrubs and labcoat went to Canton and are on display at the Professional Football Hall of Fame.

Here’s the interesting thing about D-T – He has had several Panini Instant cards over the years, going as far back as 2016; but a pack-issued rookie card? If you’re breaking 2020 Prizm NFL, here’s a secret – you can find this incredible person’s cardboard inside.

Stay tuned for a full feature on Alphonso Davies in Hobby Outposts from the North.

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Hobby Outposts from The North: Canada’s greatest athlete / doctor


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