September 11, 2004

That was hockey is what that was.: Canada beats the Czechs in their World Cup semifinal match in one of the greatest games I have ever seen. In any sport. Finland beat the USAians Friday night in a very tight game that could've gone either way. So, Tuesday night's game between Finland and Canada will decide the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. It'll be a deep pool of talent versus sisu.

posted by NoMich to hockey at 09:06 PM - 31 comments

Yeah, it was a pretty good game. I was really impressed by the way the Czechs were able to translate their trap/tight-checking style into offensive bursts which seemed to scare the Canadians at time. They were really primed for this game, but the Canadian talent eventually came through. While I can't help thinking that Brodeur might've saved one or more of those goals, Luongo did indeed do a stellar job when needed. Very good game.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:46 PM on September 11

You know what I think is telling, and a key reason as to why Canada and the Finns are in the finals? Of the three Vezina nominees last year, all three (!) are in the line-up for the final on Tuesday. That's quite the stat when only two teams are involved. But really good game today, yes. That third period and the three minutes of overtime were real nail-biters.

posted by mkn at 11:46 PM on September 11

Retardedly good hockey game. I died about 14 times between the start of the 2nd and the end of the game. The Czechs deserved this one, and I give them a ton of respect. They are a hockey superpower. If Czechoslovakia had stayed united, Canada would be second place on the hockey scene. Luongo, despite the two weak goals, was the difference...he made a number of absurd saves, and that can't be denied. That was the real final. The Finns, despite the upcoming clutch-and-grab fest, won't pose the same challenge.

posted by Succa at 01:29 AM on September 12

This makes me so sad. I watched the 1st period and most of the 2nd. Missed the 3rd period as I had to go pick up my father. I listened on the radio, beating my head into the steering wheel with every goal. Tuesday night, I go nowhere.

posted by Salmonberry at 01:55 AM on September 12

OK Americans, so you can't play ice hockey, tennis or basketball. What can you play? :-)

posted by salmacis at 05:06 AM on September 12

Wait a sec, us 'Merkans might win bronze. We better at least. It will be the last medal for a very long time.

posted by NoMich at 08:39 AM on September 12

Looks like they can play Olympics. In the summer, anyway.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:13 AM on September 12

Awesome.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:16 AM on September 12

Gee, y'all think that this might be Vinnie's year?

posted by NoMich at 10:31 AM on September 12

In the words of the Wolf: "Let's not start sucking each other's dicks just yet." Czechs were totally the better team last night. Good game.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:48 PM on September 12

That was one hell of a great game. But I'm getting wistful. Tomorrow night is gonna be the last top-rank hockey we'll see for we-don't-know-how-long, and given the quality of last night's game (I know, I know, the NHL isn't like that, but dammit maybe it could and should be), I can feel myself missing it already.

posted by chicobangs at 10:07 AM on September 13

I was lucky enough to get tickets to the game Saturday night as a birthday gift. Wow, it was a pretty cool atmosphere. A few thoughts: - the atmosphere for the national anthem was crazy....it felt like you were on TV like the players were. - it was a little weird how many people were checking out Gretzky's daughter during the anthem. - the Czechs were very big. - they outplayed Canada in a more steady fashion; Canada had more highs and lows. - it's always very odd not having Bob Cole and Harry Neale along when you are watching. - there was less joy than relief in the ACC after the first goal was scored. - I thought Heatley and Bouwmeester looked a little over their heads at times, though Bouwmeester seemed to improve as the game went on. Though they don't get as much face time on TV (I certainly didn't know them as well), I thought Hannan and Doan were all over the place for Canada, laying lumber and generally making things happen. - give Iginla international ice to work with, and that amazing rush he had in the second is a goal....wow.

posted by smithers at 10:55 AM on September 13

A few thoughts... I should add, "nothing terribly insightful here, but not sure how well my experiences translated to TV."

posted by smithers at 10:58 AM on September 13

Was a hell of a game. I watched the regular first three periods at home, and then tried to scoot off to a bbq I was late for (where they were watching the game), but got caught behind an accident. At least I heard it on the radio. That game was so much better than the dirgefest of trapping that was Finland - USA. I felt sorry for the USers, but was happy to see Kipper and Niemenan get through. Tomorrow should be good.

posted by sauril at 11:43 AM on September 13

It was a great game but some of Luongo's "great saves" seemed to be more due to luck than skill and positioning. Well, at least one was - a shot in the thrid period from the left side when Luongo lost track of the puck and was down and out on the right. He stopped it but it was more due to the shot being headed right for the heart of the net than him getting himself into a position to challenge the shooter. A few other times he had that kind of "did i stop that?" kind of peak around that I can't recall Brodeur offering in this tournament. Maybe it was a confidence thing but I can't get too down on him. He kept the puck out enough to win the game, and he hadn't played since the exhibition games. I felt the Canadians dodged a bullet on that night. That said, great game, thankful for the result and looking forward to the game tomorrow night. anf FWIW, I caught some shows on the NHL network on Saturday and if I actually received that network it wouldn't be a bad way to alleviate the pangs of missing the NHL this season. On Saturday PM they had a 1hr show about the 1990 Cup finals (EDM over BOS) and then followed that with a classic game (compressed into 2 hours), 1995 CGY vs SJ, game 7 western quarterfinal. I knew the result but had never seen that game and couldn't bear to actually watch the game to completion and THAT game was something else. There must be loads of stuff on the NHL network that would keep me amused.

posted by gspm at 01:12 PM on September 13

OK Americans, so you can't play ice hockey, tennis or basketball. What can you play? :-) baseball! Oh, wait...

posted by Bernreuther at 02:20 PM on September 13

american football. at least. and what about the two game winning goals (saku and vinnie) being similar. great chance from the right side of the side of the net that has you tearing your hair out when it is missed, momentary bobble, skilfull recovery to pot the puck.

posted by gspm at 04:19 PM on September 13

OK Americans, so you can't play ice hockey, tennis or basketball. What can you play? :-) Not cricket, as our team's performance in the ICC Championship the last few days is showing!

posted by billsaysthis at 06:44 PM on September 13

*cries* I caught periods 1 and 2, then had to go pick up my father 45 mins away. I listened to the 3rd period on the radio on the way to the ferry, cursing and beating the steering wheel. Likely the best 20 mins of the whole damn tournament. Missed the OT. Life. Isn't. Fair. To. Me.

posted by Salmonberry at 09:53 PM on September 13

(I know I already commented on this, but I am reminded all over by the picture posted. Stop it. Stop torturing me.)

posted by Salmonberry at 09:55 PM on September 13

Not cricket, as our team's performance in the ICC Championship the last few days is showing! In other news, America has a national cricket team.

posted by NoMich at 11:31 PM on September 13

billsaysthis: Actually, I thought there were some decent aspects to the US ICC performance, mostly around the fact that fielding and other fundamentals were sound. That's the stuff you can train for. What you can't train for, and only get from a pool of players, is talent. The US team is definitely deficient there (especially bowling), but the fact they've got the basics right would suggest you guys have the right coaching and so on. So if the player base ever expands, you'll be in a good position. That said, I did take a certain pleasure in watching the last 6 overs of NZ vs USA.

posted by rodgerd at 11:49 PM on September 13

I have an announcement. Starting in (checks his watch) about three and a half hours, I will be completely unreachable. Nobody bother calling me, tell the Jehovah's Witnessess to stay home, bill collectors can piss off, sorry Grandma I'll call you back, and nobody set my apartment building on fire, okay? If this is the last top-level hockey we're going to see for a few months, I'll be damned if I'll miss any of it. Game better live up, too, is all I'm saying, or some sumbitch gonna pay.

posted by chicobangs at 02:40 PM on September 14

Three words: Canada versus Kiprusoff. This is gonna be a doozy.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:29 PM on September 14

I'm getting goosebumps! /shows pasty-white arm SEE?!

posted by grum@work at 03:52 PM on September 14

fuck

posted by NoMich at 08:43 PM on September 14

W00t! Kiprusoff is my favourite goalie - he got the Flames into the Stanley Cup - and Ruutu's goal was fantastic. Loved it. Love Doan. Love Ignila. Yay us!

posted by Salmonberry at 09:02 PM on September 14

what he said. canada rocks.

posted by juv3nal at 10:06 PM on September 14

Canada rocks!

posted by NoMich at 10:17 PM on September 14

word

posted by garfield at 10:57 PM on September 14

Ya.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:55 PM on September 16

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