Sunday, March 21, 2010
Toews played a huge part in bringing the Men's Hockey Gold medal home to Canada this past Sunday. Whomever scored first (between the U.S. and Canada) went on to win every game of the Olympics...so obviously, scoring first in the Gold Medal showdown was HUGE! Winnipeg-born Jonathon Toews (currently captain on the Chicago Blackhawks) started off the game with exactly that - THE FIRST GOAL!!
That goal would end up making all the difference in the world since Canada went on to (BARELY) win by only one goal. Crosby redeemed himself with a 5-hole, sudden death OT goal. Crosby was stopped by the stellar Ryan Miller in an earlier breakaway that left many Canadian fans exasperated and wondering if Crosby might have lost his chance for Olympic glory...apparently not!
This is GREAT for Canadian Hockey. Somehow though, the game reminded me of the famous Jimmy Conners quote: 'I hate losing more than I like winning.' Canada was very lucky to squeak this game out!
Even though this is a (minor) blow for American hockey and a boost for Canadian hockey, as far as the NHL is concerned, I originally anticipated that a BIG win would help Bettman to realize that Canada is (still) the powerhouse of the world when it comes to hockey...and therefore, he may have even more pressure on him to relocate some of these U.S. teams that are not pulling in the fans to their games. After hearing some discussion on television here and there, I am more inclined to think that Bettman might instead consider just eliminating some teams instead relocating. This obviously worries me about Winnipeg's possibilities of getting a team.
I can't help it think that a complete BLOWOUT would have really hammered the point home. Oh well...one thing they can't take away from us: A born-and-raised Winnipegger drew first blood in the most important game of the Winter Olympics this year. So, you can imagine that Winnipeg Hockey is even stronger than it was prior to the Olympics - hard to fathom...but TRUE!
Congrats to Sydney Crosby - what a year for 'The Face of Hockey': The Stanley Cup and a Gold Medal!
By the way, (although I did tweet about it) I apologize for not officially recognizing the female National Hockey Team's accomplishments in this 2010 Winter Olympics as well - They dominated in a way that the men's team couldn't - Congrats to all!
It's safe to say that CANADA (still) RULES HOCKEY mofos!