On more than a few occasions in the past 2 1/2 years, Peter McNab, star center of the Boston Bruins, has caused a division in the loyalties of his parents in games against the Washington Capitals.
Max McNab, general manager of the Capitals, learns from experience.
So last month, McNab signed his younger son David, a 6-foot-7 goalie, to a tryout agreement to attend the Capitals' summer training camp.
David McNab, 22, recently graduated from the University of Wisconsin. He says he dosen't feel any added pressure because his father is his general manager. Nor does his father believe the relationship will create waves when the Caps go to summer camp Sept. 17.
McNab's wife June has been watching hockey since her marriage to Max 23 years ago. "It used to be easy watching Max. I was young and didn't have any responsibilties then," she said. "But it's more pressure now watching Peter. And it will be even twice as bad with David being a goalie - everyone points toward them."
The younger son has set his mind on becoming a National Hockey League goalie. "When I was a kid it seemed like the goalies were getting all of the glory. I am not scared - I broke my nose once, but I have yet to lose any teeth or get a serious injury," he said.
The McNab family dreams of the day when David will become a Capital. "It would be great to have him as a goalie in the National League," Max said.
"Three years ago I was drafted by St. Louis and put on their protective list, but I was dropped a few weeks ago," explained David.
"I think he (David) understands that everyone on the team is treated equally," McNab said. "We have great interest in ours sons, but there will be no special favors."
"Dad thought I had potential and so did St. Louis, but it wasn't a favor by him," David said. "I don't think he is in a position to make a favor."
David realizes he will not make the team this year, his goal is a sport on one of the farm team rosters.
McNab says he does not coach his sons. However, David plans to acquire a few tips about training camp when he visits Peter next month.
"I guess it's just a natural thing for them to be more interested in hockey as a sport," Max McNab said. "We never encouraged them or discouraged them."
The only son not to follow the family hockey tradition is Michael, who is studying law at Oxford University for six weeks. During the regular school year he attends the University of San Diego law school.