They say that history repeats itself...
I look at my blog dated January 6, 2010 and EXACTLY what happened. I could take my blog a year ago today and change the opponent, and it would read EXACTLY what I wanted to say today.
Never in my life, not even last year, have I felt such contempt for a bunch of young men like I have about this squad from the Canadian Juniors this year. And do you know why? Because they were ARROGANT thinking that they had a 3 goal lead going into the final period of the tournament, and that nobody could beat them.
"We are Canada, the mightiest nation of hockey in the world. They have to beat us, and we are showing the world exactly how dominating we are in this sport at every level" -It must've sounded like that when they were passing out the champagne in the dressing room at the end of the second period and celebrating a victory that was still 20 more HARD working minutes away.
And you could see it in the way that they played. -Missing assignments, not picking up their men, getting beat to the puck, and trying to NOT LOSE THE GAME, as opposed to finishing off the game with the same hard work that got them the 3-0 lead in the first place. It wasn't bad goaltending that lost it for us either. It was a collective effort to not work hard and finish the tournament with hard work and determination. -And give the Russians credit, they came from behind against the Finns in the quarter final when they were down 3-1 with less than 4 minutes to go in the game and won in overtime 4-3. They were also down against the Swedes and scored in the final minutes to beat them in the Semi-Final in another great comeback.
So what do you think the coach of Team Canada Dave Cameron was telling our cocky Canadian hockey players in the dressing room in the second intermission?
Something like, "Don't count these guys out. They have come from behind in the last 2 games and they are hungry to beat us. It feels the same for us to beat Russia as it does for those Russian boys to beat Canada. -Play your game, work hard, and stay focused, and we will be Junior Champions"
And then they go out and completely shit the bed in every way...
These kids gave up, and had no work ethic because they were cocky little bastards, and they got their ass handed to them on a plate and I think it looks good on them. I honestly hope that they feel this in their guts for the rest of their lives... That sounds harsh, but it's true.
Here's the reason why...
As much as it sounds arrogant, Canada is the greatest hockey nation of talent in the world. We have the most resources, interest and population of people who absolutely LOVE hockey. Every kid who grows up in Canada is infected by it. Although we have other sports that we play, not one comes even close to hockey in Canada. -The next sports are a VERY distant second place...
Other countries play hockey, but none are as passionate about hockey as a whole as Canadians are. -That's a fact. There is so much expectation and pressure on these young hockey players that nothing less than gold is acceptable EVERY year. -And that's just the way it is. To much given, much is expected.
And we SHOULD win every year. We have the best players, coaches, support, and it is our tournament to win every year. So that when we lose, there is a really good reason why. So what is the reason in this year's plight?
We are a bunch of cocky, arrogant hockey players who know exactly HOW good we are, and we rely on talent alone and not hard work and focus to win.
Well, that hasn't worked out very well for us the past 2 years, and both times, we were out-worked for a title that was clearly ours to lose. You can't tell me that we don't have the most talented hockey players in the world, and the depth of our team is incredible compared to other nations. These young men just let their ego's get in the way of what they thought they were entitled to. -A birthright that guarantees them dominance in the World Junior tournament.
Well, last night they lost. The pain will subside as each of them goes on to their own hockey careers, and sign massively lucrative pro contracts and make lots of money. And I hope that this money will help them feel better about how they let the nation of people down that believed in them, our system, and our game. I hope that they will never forget how their arrogance cost them and us another title that we would rather have than any other title a World Junior Championship could offer. And that is the title of hardest working team with the most talent.
But this year, that title goes to the Russians who were clearly more hungry than the Canadians, and fought for it against every obstacle you would've put in front of them.
And they earned it the good old fashioned way...Something our Canadian boys could learn from...