Friday, January 06, 2006

Goodbye Al

Last night was the gold medal game of the World Junior Hockey Championships which this year are being held in Vancouver Canada. Now readers of this blog know how much of a hockey fanatic I am, and in how much esteem I hold this tournament (the most exciting hockey of the year with the sole exception of a compelling WHC, Olympics or the odd Stanley Cup series). These junior players are not playing for fame or fortune, they're playing for the passion of the game and for their country.

This year Canada was actually an underdog due to their lack of highly skilled draft picks (most of who although young enough to play were too good and stayed playing in the NHL, need I say it, players like Crosby) and young inexperienced players. They were actually rated as low as 3rd or 4th to the dominate US and Russians (both teams which had a high number of skilled 19 year olds)... but they pulled it through in one of the most exciting hockey games EVER!

The first period was fast and furious with a pace only a Canada-Russia matchup can garner. Russia was actually pouring it on with an initial 15-4 shot lead. Thanks to some great Pooge goaltending and hard checking by the team the lads were able to withstand it and shove in 2 quick goals at the end of the period. Combine a Russian goal being missed, a crossbar and a total domination by Downie knocking the top Russian players off their games (Malkin had only 2 shots all game!!), and the Russians were done. By the third it was 5-0 with the Canadians coming in waves.

The tears of sadness on the Russian players faces and the tears of joy on the Canadians faces said it all. What a game, what a tournament, great job lads... bringing home the gold!

It was also a sad night however as it was time to wish our good friend Al safe travels on her way back to Australia for another year :-( No worries though as we've got it all figured out, see you for the Australian national holiday January 2007! I can't wait to get my board and chill by the beach learning to surf from the best for a solid 3 weeks. Add in a cross-continent trek and you've got one hell of a first go at doing Oz in style :-)

So Al, take it easy down there and warm up the waves for me ;-) Cheers!

Once again, congrats to our boys for bringing home the gold. Few thought you could do it and you proved them all wrong. Boo-Yeah!! :-) :-)

2006 World Junior Champions

Time to hit the sack, got a full day of hockey (tomorrow is "Hockey Day in Canada with all 6 Canadian teams playing each other in a row) and NFL playoffs, Go Bucs!! Man it's good to be back home for a bit! :-)

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