Worlds worlds worlds worlds worlds worlds WORLDS. Worlds? Worlds. Yes. LET’S DO THIS.
‘murricawatch: Because we tote blue passports
America made it all the way to the quarterfinals…where they were then dispatched 3-2 by the Finnish team. Heartbreaker. After a first period notable for nothing–no penalties, no goals–the Finns got on the board first…and then Kyle Palmieri answered less than half a minute later to tie it. Bobby Ryan put up another goal to break the tie, but the Finns fought back: Mikko Koivu tied it and then, just as everyone thought that overtime was imminent, Jesse Joensuu, who had scored the first goal, did it again. The Americans couldn’t answer that and so their World Championship ended early. But it was still a blast to watch them, see all sorts of talent developing (sprinkles to you, Max Pacioretty! And you, Justin Faulk!), enjoy all the games we got to see…Here’s to next year, eh boys?
Other games with folks in them that we like
Canada: Canada was downed 4-3 in the quarterfinals by Slovakia. Slovakia built up a two-goal leading, including one by Miroslav “Miro the Hero” Satan, that was slowly chipped away by Canada. Evander Kane and Jeff Skinner turned the game into a tie (Skinner assisted by Jordan Eberle and Patrick Sharp), Alexandre Burrows got Canada ahead (and caused me to grumble about fingers and such), but then Milan Bartovic retied the game. In another case of late-game heroics, Michal Handzus scored in the first few seconds of a Slovakian power play granted when Ryan Getzlaf brutally kneed a Slovak player and ended his game early. This time, Slovakia held the lead and so both North American teams fell on the same day.
Czech Republic: In another case of late-in-the-quarterfinal-game heroics, the Czechs beat Sweden 4-3. Petr Nedved was among the goal scorers and David Krejci assisted! The late-game tiebreaker here came from the stick of Milan Michalek with 30 seconds left. Then, in the semifinals, they met Slovakia for placing in the medal games and lost 3-1, giving them the chance for bronze. Michael Frolik was the only Czech scorer in that game. In the bronze medal game, the Czechs defeated Finland 3-2 and did all their goal-scoring in the first period. Krejci’s late first period goal stood as the game-winner and the Czech Republic repeated as bronze medalists. Let’s look at some pictures now.
Slovakia: Skipping over the quarterfinal and semifinal games mentioned above…except to mention when Satan scored in the semifinal game, he broke out a new version of his Slovakian goal dance of joy:
…let’s focus on Slovakia battling for their first medal since 2002. It was gold that year, but they’ll settle for silver this year after losing 6-2 to Russia. Zdeno Chara basically carried the game atop his giant shoulders, scoring both of Slovakia’s goals, not enough to overcome Russia’s firepower. And while Russia won the game and the gold, Chara came out to receive his medal and awards (he’d also been named Best Player of the Game and selected as Best Defenseman and a member of the all-star lineup) attired in a Pavol Demitra jersey worn backwards so his name and number were visible in pictures. He kissed the name and pointed to the sky before getting his medal. It was such a touching tribute. This is a guy who always seems to know just what to do when it comes to getting awards. (He also inspired Tomas Kopecky to do the same thing!) Oh captain, my captain.
Next year, the tournament will be cohosted by Finland and Sweden again, except now Sweden will handle semifinal and medal games. The groups have been mixed up a little bit and Austria and Slovenia have been promoted (see ya Italy and Kazakhstan).
Now to turn my attentions to the Memorial Cup in addition to the Stanley Cup!