While some members of the Team Canada hockey team complained of the treatment they received overseas, Guy Charron's only negativism concerned abuse at home.
Specifically, Charron's home in Prince George's County was vandalized while he was overseas playing in the World Hockey Championships at Vienna.
"There was some damage," the Washington Capitals' scoring leader said. They threw some eggs around, and they took several things, a few valuables. It was tough to come home to, but the damage was not bad."
The experience was not enough to sour Charron on Maryland living. He is pleased with his home, backyard pool and all, and plans to stay here the rest of the summer.
Despite a knee injury suffered in the opening game of the World Championships, which forced him to miss the rest of the tourney, Charron called the European trip "one of the greatest experiences I've ever had."
"I felt a lot of emotion through the exhibitions and during the championships, even though I didn't get too much participation," Charron said. "A lot of our players were criticized for things they did over there, but I couldn't say anything against them. I could understand, wiht so much emotion, how they could retaliate the way they did."
Several of the Canadians were described as "butchers" by European critics for the way they used their sticks, adn in one game against the Soviet Union, Team Canada was shorthanded for 32 minutes.
Although beaten twice by the third-plave Soviets, Team Canada routed the championship Czechoslovakia team, 8-2, and defeated silver medalist Sweden, 7-0. Canada finished only two points out of first place.
Charron stretched knee ligaments and placed in a cast for 10 days. He was started on an exercise program, which will continue through the summer, and no permanent damage is foreseen.
"When he was tested here, they found his injured leg was actually stronger than the other one," said Capitals general manager Max McNab.
"I was very happy when they told me I didn't need an operation, that it was just a matter of resting it," Charron said. "It shouldn't be any problem. I'll begin running in June and it should be fine."
Next year the World Championships will be held Prague and Charron admits, despite the exhilaration of this trip, he might not want to go back.
"Of all the places we visited - we were there four days - Prague was the place we disliked the most," Charron said. "It's an old city and I guess there are things to see, but conditions are very different. I guess we'r spoiled. There was a different catergory of people there, just not as friendly as in other places."
At the Stanley Cup finals, Scotty Bowman, the Canadiens' coach, noted that "Washington and Minnesota got the most mileage from what talent they had." But Bowman warned that the Capitals need "a top-notch goaler."
The Canadiens are interested in defenseman Robert Picard, the Capitals' likely No. 1 amateur draft choice, so Bowman might be merely lighting the fuse for a Bunny Larocque trade overture. However, the resurrection of Roger Crozier indicates similar doubts among the Capitals' brain turst.
Picard has seen quite a bit of the Capitals already. He watched them lose an 11-0 game in Montreal on April 2, an experience that is likely to increase his asking price.
Last week Picard was in Vancouver, attending the Memorial Cup junior final as a spectator and as the Quebec League's player of the year. He was riding a bicycle when washington coach Tom McVie spotted him and said, "If we draft you, you'll have to get rid of the bike anbd run."
Center Dale McCourt of St. Catharines was named Canada's junior player of the year and defenseman Harry Beck of New Westminster, the champion, was voted most valuable player in the Memorial Cup. Those two are expected to be the first players drafted, with the Capitals choosing Picard No. 3.