Olympic hockey

For those waiting for men’s Olympic hockey to start. Make sure you watch to the end:

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I don’t know anything about this, but I think I’ll give watching the matches a try. How is our team looking?

The U.S. has a pretty good team this year and should have a decent chance at getting a medal. I imagine that Canada is the favorite for winning the gold this year. They have a so many high quality players. Many of which you would want to build an entire team around if you were building a NHL team. That said, the US and Canada seem to play better in North America than on the larger European style ice surfaces like what they will be playing on in this tournament.

Sweden is probably another team that is a good bet to get a medal. After them, its hard to say. Finland, The Czech Republic, Slovakia, and of course Russia should all be pretty competitive in the tournament.

I hope Canada wins. I think Russia will win. But any of the top teams could win.

If Canada can’t win I would like to see Russia take it, since they are playing in front of their own fans. And if Russia beats Canada I won’t be upset, but Canada may not even get that far since all the top teams are very evenly matched I think.

A good part of my Russian learning came from reading and listening to Echo Moskvi. I would download the audio and texts of their interviews, almost every day for years.

I volunteered to maintain a blog for Echo during the Vancouver Olympics. I went around taking pictures, and wrote up blog posts that Evgueny corrected for me. Then one day I was phoned by Echo Moskvi and asked if I would do an interview on the telephone. I said yes. It was Vladislav Tretiak. We spoke for about 15 minutes in Russian.

He asked me if it would be like Pearl Harbour if Canada lost. I said, no, our hockey Pearl Harbour was the first game of the Super Series in 1972 when the USSR beat our pros in Montreal.

The next day I went to the Echo site to download our interview, and find out what I had said.

For those who don’t know, Tretiak is probably still the best known Russian hockey player in Canada, and was the goaltender for the USSR in the Super Series. He is a member of hockey’s Hall of Fame, and at present head of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation.

By the way it was great to see Vyacheslav Fetisov as one of the Olympic flag bearers on the opening ceremony.

Steve, it was Tretyak who lit the flame at the Opening!!! This is sooooooooo amazing that you spoke to him.

Russia for the GOLD!!!

That’s pretty cool that you were able to do that during the Vancouver Olympics Steve. I’ll be rooting for the US of course but to be honest, I just enjoy watching hockey. Being from the Pittsburgh area and a longtime Penguins fan, I’m looking forward to seeing some of the players from the Penguins playing in the tournament. In particular, Olli Maatta of Finland. That guy seems to have come a long way in a short period of time. It will be interesting to see how he plays in the high pressure environment of the Olympics since he hasn’t played in any NHL playoff games yet.

@nebulae - it will be 4.30 am in Vancouver… But I’ll do it! :slight_smile:

Galina, you’re a true trooper! :slight_smile:
It’ll be 7.30 in NYC for the Russia-Slovenia match. I will be up.

@nebulae - :slight_smile: with such a great support from all over the world Russia just MUST win! :slight_smile:

Speaking of the Russian team, does anyone other than me think its a bit strange that Alexander Ovechkin seems to be considered Russia’s best player without question? Maybe I’m biased because I see Evgeni Malkin play on a regular basis but I think he is Russia’s most talented hockey player. It could also be that Malkin seems to be a bit shy and tends to keep to himself and Ovechkin seems to love talking to the media. If you look at their career NHL stats, Malkin actually has a higher point-per-game average than Ovechkin. Malkin also has 2 scoring titles to the one that Ovechkin has and Malkin was voted MVP when the Penguins won the Stanley Cup.

Watch out for Finland and Sweden, they look pretty good i think (: Heja Kronorna, Leijonat!
Right now I´m learning finnish by watching hockey on tv and listning on the radio, perfect combination).

Finland has the best goaltenders so that could be a factor for their path to the gold.

I’m thinking Canada will take the gold, they’re just too good. Sweden could be up there as well, looked great from what I was able to see of the game yesterday. I think the US has one of the best teams we’ve had in awhile but we’re still too weak at the blueline.

cgreen0038: Datsyuk? Maybe I’m biased being a Wings fan, but I’d argue Datsyuk is just as talented as either Malkin or Ovi. I don’t think it’s a question that he is a better overall player on both ends of the ice, but Malkin and Ovechkin put up more numbers than Datsyuk.

Datsyuk is the best!

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@ARay - You do have a point there. Datsyuk is probably the best two way forward in the world. There are few players that I would rather have leading a team. Smart decision on Russia’s part to make him captain. To be honest, I kind of forgot about him since he has been missing time due to injury problems. I’m guessing that he probably isn’t at 100% for the games.

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I have to admit that I didn’t think Russia showed a fantastic game with Slovenia. They won by a lot and it looks like they had many realisation moments (is that the term?), but they were not awesome. Again, I not a super technical lover of hockey, I just go by my overall impression, and the impression was moderate.

With that said, they are still the best team in the world :slight_smile: And yes, Galina, with the support they’re receiving in their homeland and elsewhere they have got to win. It should at least help.

^Yes realisation as a term does exist, but I wouldn’t use it in this context. Do you perhaps mean they had a lot of chances to create scoring opportunities?

CannlK84, I meant that they were in the opponent’s zone a lot, shot at the gate and made passes a lot.