WJC final game recap

by Robert Neuhauser
on
The championship title. The goal of every team involved in some sport. And the final battle
is often the most exciting event when the top two teams clash. At this year’s WJC the Russian
and Canadian teams were those two gladiators ready to enter the arena. The Russians thrashed
the USA team and defeated the Finns in an overtime battle on their way to the gold medal
game while the Canadians had to face Swedes and Swiss. Stan Butler’s guys have beaten both
of those teams to establish a final game between the two mighty warriors – Russia and Canada.

The Canadians have had a marvellous start into the game. Andrei Medvedev’s second contact
with the puck came as he had to put it out of his net. The first Canadian raid was a
succesfull one. Jarret Stoll raced with it into the Russian zone, fired a shot at Medvedev
who made the save, but he deflected it in front of him. He couldn’t reach it with his glove
and the defense couldn’t clear Brian Sutherby from the crease. Sutherby didn’t have a problem
to pop the puck into the Russian net with only 22 seconds played.
A cold shower for the Russians, now they faced the fact that they have to cut the Canadian
lead from the very beginning of the game instead of building their own lead. And the
Canadians didn’t look as they would be willing to let their lead cut. During the first
minutes they forechecked hard, played well aggresively and handled the pace of the game
with poise. Pascal Leclaire wasn’t under a huge pressure and the Canadians looked better. Read more»

The Blues are Gritting Their Teeth

by Larry Deutsch
on

In the post-Slovakian era, the entire St. Louis Blues organization is
struggling mightily to succeed with an ever-evolving new identity. A system
once defined by speed and finesse with a European flare has been completely
overhauled over the past couple of years. General Manager Larry Pleau
sacrificed a fathom or two of the organization’s legendary depth in his
quest to assemble a squad capable of Stanley Cup success.

As an organization, the Blues have done an outstanding job in recent history
with player development, turning several marginal prospects into legitimate
NHLers. Although the knock against the system has been their failure to
produce a single legitimate superstar, they were working with some fairly
low draft positions. Jochen Hecht, Michal Handzus, Marty Reasoner, and
Ladislav Nagy were developed into good enough NHL players to be used as
trade bait in the acquisitions of superstar forwards Keith Tkachuk and Doug
Weight.

Now, it would seem, the desired attribute is an intangible characteristic
known as “grit.” All hockey clichés aside, (standing up for a teammate,
never taking a shift off, taking your lumps to score a goal) in the grand
scheme things, grit is simply the willingness to do whatever it takes to win
the Stanley Cup.

There are several players currently in the system who seem to embody this
rather nebulous concept and thereby represent the visible future of the
Blues:

Pepperpot center Eric Boguniecki, continues to light up AHL goaltenders,
maintaining a point-per-game pace and could certainly see a call- Read more»

WJC relegation game 2

by Robert Neuhauser
on

Relegation game 2

France-Belarus 2:3

1st Period
07:47 BLR Kastsitsyn (Mialeshka, Siankevich) 0:1
10:04 BLR Mialeshka (Siankevich) 0:2

2nd Period
24:40 FRA Kevorkian (Bayon) 1:2
25:00 BLR Klimiankou (Nemirka, Grabovski) 1:3
35:23 FRA Albert (Brodin, Jestin) 2:3

3rd Period

no scoring

Because of the French win in the first relegation game, the game went into a ten-minute
overtime. No goal was scored during that extra time so the penalty shots had to decide.
In an unprecendented series of 13 penalty shots Dmitri Mialeshka scored the series-winning
goal, saving team Belarus in the elite Group A of the WJC also for the next season.

Leafs prospects rankings 1-10

by Stephen J. Holodinsky
on


Leaf Prospect Rankings Redux (Part I)


Half a hockey season is a long time when it comes to developing players between the ages of 18 and 23. As such it only makes sense to take another look at the Leaf prospect ladder now and see how the yung’uns are shaping up. Are they picking up the skills they’ll need to compete in the big show according to plan? Are some lagging behind? Are some leapfrogging others? Here’s the latest:


1. Mikael Tellqvist-G:
Though Mike Minard has played the majority of minutes on The Rock this year, there are just too many positives in Tellqvist’s game to say that he will be anything but a starting goaltender in the NHL once he adjusts to the North American game. Will he be in the ACC by the end of the year? Will he be there to start the next one? Will he be there in 2003-2004? Who knows. When he does arrive though, it will be as more than someone to play one game in four.


2. Brad Boyes-C:
His recent WJC performance on the heels of a bout of mononucleosis has only solidified his spot at the second rung and maybe even moved him closer to the top one. He showed the ability to lead the charge to the net in the tournament which was something that hadn’t been part of his game until then. Definitely has the mean streak needed to make up for his lack of size in the pros. Demonstrated some unbelievable hand-eye co-ordination and was equally comfortable as a playmaker and a finisher. Great in the faceoff dot.


3. Carlo Colaiacovo-D:
One of the big leapers, the Erie blueliner was one of the best d Read more»

Related Articles