Darryl Sutter grew up between Montana and the North Pole, in a tiny Alberta prairie town so isolated and homogenized that debates which consumed the outside world only occasionally seeped in.
“All that stuff, it was irrelevant to us,” he said of issues such as racial equality and gay rights. “Growing up, if there was any diversity it would have been we saw kids as rich kids. We thought we were poor kids.”
But if Sutter’s childhood lacked the melting-pot experience of a big city, it was rich in small-town values. So even though the minority population of Viking, Canada, is about 3%, Sutter and his six hockey-playing brothers never treated anyone differently.