CANADA WINS WORLD HOCKEY CUP
Canada’s hockey record is now at 15 straight wins in either the Olympics or World Hockey after the team defeated Team Europe 2-1 Thursday night to claim the World Cup Of Hockey.
They claimed the Cup by winning two straight games in a best of three final series. However, the win didn’t come easy. It took until the final minutes of the third period before they finally managed to break through the stiff Team Europe defense. With only three minutes left and Anzar Kopatar in the penalty box Canada scored on a power play to tie the game at 1-1 off a Patrice Bergeron, Brent Burns point shot. Canada’s Sydney Crosby said he felt as if the game was going to go into overtime after team mate Drew Doughty took a high sticking penalty with less than two minutes left. But then Brad March and scored a short handed goal when he took a pass from just inside the European team’s blue line and rifled one past goaltender Jaroslav Halek with only 44 seconds left. It would be the game winning goal. Marchand scored four goals during the tournament.
Team Europe came out with very strong play right from the very first whistle and continued it until the final whistle. Their efforts paid off too as they scored the first goal. It was a power play goal after Team Europe defense man Zdeno Chara blasted a seeing eye shot past goaltender Corey Price. However, they couldn’t get anything else past Price and the first period ended with the score still at 1-0. They came out strong again in the second period but Team Canada began picking skating much harder. They almost tied the game early in the second period on a power play advantage when a puck was banged off the inside post. But it missed going into a wide open net so the Europeans were still hanging onto a 1-0 lead and outshooting Canada at the end of the second period.
Possession statistics showed Canada was beginning to lead the play in total shot attempts. However, due to a valiant defensive effort by Team Europe, most shots headed for goaltender Halek were blocked and never reached him. In addition, Europe had more shots because of their relentless forecheck and a huge number of turnovers by Team Canada.
Sydney Crosby was named Most Valuable Player of the Tournament. Cory Price had 32 saves on 33 shots while Halek made 32 on 34.
Although Team Canada won game one of the best of three series, Coach Mike Bobcock was critical of their play.
“We need some more guys on deck than we had tonight,” he announced after Monday’s game.