Sunday, January 5, 2014

No Medal Again!

For the first time in more than 30 years, Canada officially has a medal drought at the World Junior Hockey Championship.
Canada dropped the bronze medal game to Russia by a score of 2-1 on Sunday, marking the first time it has failed to win a medal in back-to-back tournaments since the Program of Excellence's inception in 1982.
Russia stormed out to an early 2-0 lead over Canada on Sunday thanks to first period goals from Mikhail Grigorenko and Eduard Gimatov. It would provide the basis for a lead Russia would never surrender.
Canada would get on the board mid-way through the third with defenceman Josh Morrissey giving the Canadian team some life, but it would not be enough as the Russians would beat Canada to claim bronze for a second straight year.
Andrei Vasilevski turned away 28 of the 29 shots Canada threw at him on Sunday, improving his all-time World Junior record to 11-4 over the course of three tournaments. He was named Russia's Player of the Game.
Aaron Ekblad was named Canada's Player of the Game.
Canadian goalkeeper Zach Fucale took over as starter after Canada's preliminary round loss to the Czech Republic and stopped 30 of the 32 shots he faced in the semifinal.
The Montreal Canadiens draft pick expressed disappointment with the result despite his strong play.
"This is absolutely not about me," he told TSN in a post-game interview. "This is just about the team winning and we came here for a reason and we didn't get it done."
Canada has now gone five tournaments without bringing home World Junior gold. Their last gold came in 2009 when they claimed their fifth consecutive tournament, winning on home ice in Ottawa.
The loss sets Canada up for a tough group at the 2015 World Juniors that will be hosted in Toronto and Montreal. With the fourth-place finish, Canada is set to once again be drawn with the United States for group play in addition to whichever team wins gold later on Sunday. They will also be joined by Slovakia and Germany.



Anonymous said...

Gold for Canada next year on home dirt, Montreal/Toronto, 2015.

Joe Durrrtay

Anonymous said...

When does Canadian hockey get together to sit down and discuss what is wrong with our junior program? You know it will happen with next year's event on Canadian turf.

Anonymous said...

Let's all panic and crap our pants!

Anonymous said...

Gold on home turf 2015, hopefully yes, definitely yes. As for Hockey Canada, dismantle, or restructure ? Who knows when they will sit down and discuss what's wrong with the current program direction and thought process, It's not working as evidenced by Canadian WJC standing results. Hockey Switzerland ? a small populated country figuring out the building blocks for Incremental success on the world stage, kudos to that.


Anonymous said...

Be your own guest and have at It.