"...arguably the biggest hockey rivalry in the world..." - James Duthie (TSN) on Canada & Russia
RUSSIA = STUNNED
more when i can think straight...
Okay. First Star. Jordan Eberle. Goal #3 for Canada. Wow.
Second Star. Jordan Eberle. 5.4 seconds. Again. Um. Wow?!
Third Star. Jordan Eberle. The first shoot-out goal. I haven't heard Scotiabank Place that happy in months. Wow!!!
Honourable mentions: Dustin Tokarski, for making the two crucial saves he NEEDED to make (I don't give a shit about the five he missed during regulation); John Tavares, for making the one goal that he NEEDED to make tonight (even if he couldn't score during regulation).
Now, I believe I told Russia to bring it. And so they did. I'm not going to be one of those riduculously over-confident jerks who says that we out-classed them, because, um, well, WE DIDN'T. I'll be perfectly honest - with 9 seconds left, I was muttering "shit, we have to play Slovakia for bronze?" under my breath. Well, muttering that, but silently hoping beyond all reason that Canada would once again pull some RIDICULOUS play and score in the last five seconds like Halischuk did during OT of the gold medal game last year...
So I was off by a second. So what!?
It was a hell of a game; such a good fight against such a worthy opponent. Admittedly, a little frustrating at times (did JT fall asleep for the first half of the game?) and more than a little nerve wracking (I could have lived without Della Rovere's second trip to the sin bin and Sweden's couple of minutes with a two man advantage), but a GREAT game. [clare: I was only barely breathing - I'm guessing you wrote that during OT?] With 9:19 left in the third, I noticed my teeth were chattering. They only do that in -40 weather when I haven't slept in three days... or when I am so freaking nervous that I lose control of motor function. Vancouver was cold today, but it's never that cold here... The end of the game made it all worthwhile. (Nothing like celebrating in a bar with strangers as you all try not knock each others' beers over.)
Today's game was a fraction better than the Canada-USA game the other night and only a fraction short of Game 5 of the 2008 Cup playoff. Sorry, but 5.4 seconds ALMOST trumps 35 seconds. If it had been the gold medal game, it would top it. No question.
Day off tomorrow before we face Sweden in the gold medal game. Again. You can bet they want to toss us off our throne just as much as (if not more than) the Russians.
So, again, I have only one thing to say to Sweden:
BRING IT HARD.
(YOU KNOW WE WILL.)
Does any one want to go to the WJC in Saskatoon/Regina next year? Seriously. I'm thinking of getting a 31-game pass...