Olympics End but Great Hockey Continues
March 7, 2010 by Big Tony
A week ago today the world saw one of the best hockey games in quite some time and certainly the best game of the Olympic tournament. Despite tremendous tenacity expressed by the Americans it was hockey king Canada led by Sidney Crosby who left the Vancouver games with the Gold Medal. Crosby’s overtime goal marked the end of a fantastic two weeks of hockey that produced a plethora of unpredictable moments. While it was the Canadians who climbed to the top of the mountain, in the end the real winners were hockey fans the world over. So I take this time to congratulate the Canadians on their victory, to salute the game of hockey generally, and to bid farewell to what was an awesome two weeks of hockey.
With the Olympics now behind us we transition from one set of great hockey to another as the NHL stretch run goes into full swing. As it stands today spots 6 through 11 in the Eastern Conference are separated by a total of four points while the battle for the 7th and 8th spots in the West is an even tighter race. Over the next few weeks we’ll find out who made the right moves at the trade deadline and who should have done more. We’ll see if upstart Phoenix can Colorado (back to glory days depicted above?) can keep their level of play high enough to maintain playoff positions as it is a new concept for both of these teams as assembled today. Can the Detroit Red Wings manage to solidify a playoff spot or will they be left out for the first time since dinosaurs roamed the earth? Did the Pittsburgh Penguins add enough new faces to their lineup to sure up any deficiencies they may have had to put them into the team to beat in the East? Have the Washington Capitals finally addressed their defensive woes enough to catapult themselves into the category of serious cup contenders? Why didn’t Boston—who was top seed in the East last year—not do more to address their inability to score? All the while who will score more goals before season’s end Alex Ovechkin or Sidney Crosby? Each of these questions will be answered over the next month and that means hockey fans are going to be spoiled from now until the end of the Stanley Cup Finals in June. So gear up puckheads because this is going to be awesome!