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Hockey legend skates with Utah children, shares advice

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Posted at 9:58 PM, May 25, 2014
and last updated 2014-05-25 23:58:57-04

SALT LAKE CITY – A member of the U.S. Men’s Olympic Hockey team that delivered the “Miracle on Ice” in the 1980 Olympic Games came to Utah, where he inspireed young kids with a message about hard work.

Mark Johnson skated with the team that won Olympic gold at Lake Placid in 1980, and he was in Utah to share his knowledge.

“We did some skating, some shooting, did a little stick handling, did some passing, then had a little exercises where they had a little fun,” he said.

Johnson was in Utah for a Gemstone leadership conference, and Jeff Mcintyre of Gemstone Hotels said Johnson took time to help out the children.

"If we're fortunate enough to be able to have Mark Johnson speaking to our group, we want to share that, we want to share that wealth, and what a great moment for kids like these to be on the ice with a legend,” he said.

The man with the gold medal has a message that extends beyond hockey. His focus is hard work.

"Whether that's working on a math subject, or working on a jump shot in basketball, or in this situation, working on my skating or my skills in hockey: If I put some time into it, and I commit myself to that, and I do things the right way and I create good habits, the bottom line is, you're going to get better."

Johnson said it was his pleasure to participate in the events.

"They came out smiling, and they left with bigger smiles on their face, so it looks like they had a good time,” he said of the children.