Team Canada’s home-ice, 3-2 overtime win over Team USA in the Olympic Men’s Hockey Final was GOLDEN! It’s one of the greatest championship games I’ve ever seen. Really, there wasn’t a loser at the Canada Hockey Palace in Vancouver Sunday. Oh sure, the final score read Team USA didn’t win the game. But, it certainly didn’t lose it either.
The Canadian crowd, decked out in a sea of red jerseys with a smattering of Americans decked out in red, white and blue, made the atmosphere electric before the puck even dropped to start the game. It was a tense championship game from the moment the puck was finally dropped, because of the “North American bordering countries“ battling for the Gold, and the finality a game of this magnitude brings. The sense of urgency is always there until the final horn.
That’s how it’s supposed to be in a one-of-a-kind, once-in-a-lifetime Title Game with two evenly matched teams that have a common border. NBC Olympic host Bob Costas pointed out a championship game like this probably won’t happen again. Team Canada, with the weight of an entire country on its shoulders, playing for the gold medal at home against the United States in a sport that defines Canada: Hockey.
Fighting back from a two-nothing deficit to tie the score on Zach Parise’s (New Jersey Devils) goal with just 25 seconds left in regulation with an empty net and six skaters, it looked as if Team USA was destined to avenge the Gold Medal Game loss to Team Canada at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics … another of those one-of-a-kind, once-in-a-lifetime game’s with Team USA having the home-ice advantage. I guess that would make it twice in a generation.
Alas, it wasn’t meant to be when Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh Penguins) lasered the biscuit through the wickets of USA goalie Ryan Miller (Buffalo Sabres) seven minutes in the OT for the true definition of a “Golden Goal.” Only one team was going to come away with it. Happened to be Team Canada. It scored the one and only goal needed in sudden death for the win. No loser in this one. Could’ve gone either way. Team USA didn’t win the gold. It didn’t lose it either. Look at it this way. The United States earned the Silver Medal and huge respect from the rest of the Hockey Playing World.
This incredible game was played 50 years to the day Team USA beat Team Canada for the Men’s Hockey Gold Medal at the 1960 Olympics in Squaw Valley, California … another one of those one-of-a-kind, once-in-a-lifetime championship games with the United States having home-ice advantage. At least this one was a couple of generations, and a lifetime, ago. Canada versus the United States has become quite the hockey rivalry.
- USA goalie Ryan Miller made himself a lot of fans and money during the two-week tournament. Miller was the tournament most valuable player. You can bet he’ll get a huge ovation, as he did from the appreciative and hockey-savvy Canadian fans during the medal ceremony, in Buffalo and every NHL arena the rest of the 2010 season.
- Of the four major sports (hockey, football, basketball & baseball), hockey is the least popular for a couple of reasons:
1. You have to know how to ice skate.
2. All the equipment needed to play is pretty pricey.
3. It needs to be really cold inside, or out.
4. It’s not played with a ball that’s easy to spot either in person or on TV.
5. The game’s so fast, people complain you can’t see the tiny puck racing around.
- All of the above is true. But, if you’re into the game, it sure is fun and exciting to watch. As far as playing it?
- Well, I can’t ice skate.I can’t run a 4.5, 40. I’m too small to block and tackle. I can’t catch a ball or run a fly-pattern. Too short and slow to play basketball(however, I do have a mean outside jumper………when left unguarded). I can’t hit, catch or throw with any precision. I can chew gum well and, occasionally, scratch myself………………but not in front of the camera.
- So, no matter what the sport and equipment needed, we’re all better off with me talking about sports. Although, some of you may believe I’m wasting my breath doing that too.
Just a thought.
One last thing…….
I still am experiencing the occasional “internet issues” which have caused lapses between new stories. I’m fixing the problem. So, keep checking in to the blog. THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT!