Team Canada lost 5 to 3 last night to the Russia. In the final game, the gold-medal match of the world junior hockey championship, the Canucks started great then just fell flat. Canadian fans at the HSBC arena in Buffalo, N.Y. were shocked and dismayed to see their players defeated in a trouncing which left many to wonder what could have possibly gone wrong.
Taking a 3 goal lead earlier in the game, the Canadian team looked to be poised for victory before Russia scored 5 times in the final period. The fans were apparently stunned by this upset when things had looked so good at the beginning of the match. What happened?
The opinion of the various news outlets is that Team Canada for whatever reason seemed to lose its steam in the final period. Some fans were quoted as saying that the players appeared tired; they just didn’t seem to playing full out. Of course, it was well recognised how the Russians found whatever inspiration they needed in the final period and took over the ice playing very, very hard and offensively.
People are going to be analysing this game ad nauseum today and surely one of the points of contention will be the goaltending of Mark Visentin. Did he somehow fail to come through and provide the team with the necessary saves or was Team Russia just so in the control of the game they had pretty much free hand to fire away on the net unchecked? It shouldn’t go unnoticed how the rest of Team Canada seemed to concede control of the ice to the Russians and how the Russians made use of that control to attack the Canadian net with almost impunity. In other words, yes the Canadian goaltending may be to blame but only in part. What happened to the Canadian defence?
This is the second straight year Canada has had to settle for silver. They lost last year’s final 6-5 in overtime to the United States.
This is the 13th gold medal for Russia in the 35-year-old tournament’s history.
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