I don't like hating on Canada, but I fail to see the reason there is so much excitement in this country every year because of this tournament. There is absolutely no competition for Canada. First game for Canada this year was 16-0, or some crazy score like that. In the semifinal, Canada had the first 19 shots on goal against the Swiss team, in the semifinal! Canada walks all over every team, every year. Sure Canada escaped with a win against the US on the weekend, but I bet they win it easily tonight.
Or maybe I'm just not a big hockey fan. Or Canadian enough.
Are you kidding me? I have watched every second of Team Canada's games for the past 5 years and I will just hit the highlights from the past 5 gold medals:
2005 - Dion Phaneuf left a trail of devastation behind him as he was the most physical force ever seen at the WJC. Ryan Getzlaf emerges as a superstar.
2006 - The US and Russia had the stars with Malkin, Kessel etc and Canada had a relatively unknown squad. Canada barely squeaked by Switzerland 4-3 and the US 3-2. Canada's stars were Luc Bourdon and Steve Downie and the US had 9 first round draft picks on their team but we won a very close tournament and the US finished out of the medals.
2007 - Jonathan Toews. This was Toews tournament even though Carey Price won the MVP. The Semi final vs the US was a classic going 14 rounds in the shootout. Toews went 3-3 in the shootout to eliminate the US in a very emotional game.
2008 - Canada lost 4-3 to Sweden in the preliminary round but got revenge in the finals winning 3-2 in a nail-biting overtime finals. Team Sweden's hatred for Canada starts. John Tavares made himself the first overall nhl draft pick with his performance here and Steve Stamkos showed us what the future would hold.
2009 - Nikita Filatov was supposed to be the big star of this tournament and it was all going according to plan with the Russians dominating Canada in the semis. Stretching the drama as much as possible Jordan Eberle scored with 5 seconds left in the game to tie it up. Then Eberle scores the shootout winner. In the finals Canada beats Sweden for the second straight year.
So for three straight years Team Canada went into overtime in an elimination game. These kids play all out and the emotions can be most closely compared to March Madness. Best hockey of the year.
This year Canada came back to tie Team US at the end of the third period and win in a shootout yet again. This time for first place in their pool and a bye straight through to the semis. Guess who we meet again in the finals?
Tonight at 8pm EST Team Canada vs. Team USA in the finals. Don't miss it.