Archive for December 26th, 2008

CANADA JUST DOMINANT !

December 26th, 2008

Canadian Hockey players are a special breed and they are in fact not to piss off my readers from the US or Sweden who flock to the site daily DOMINANT!. Not just Friday’s World Junior win in front of another record breaking crowd in Ottawa of 19,622. Canada led by future NHLer John Tavares and his 2 goals pounded the Czech Republic 8-1 to start off the Xmas past time tournament.

CANADA PLAYERS HAVE PASSION

The fact that Canada has won 14 yes 14 of the 26 tournaments to date is truly remarkable to say the least. But Canadians even when their best players Junior age are playing in the NHL come through. Their ability to raise their games and show an amazing amount of passion, grit and heart in the big games. It’s simple and delicate to talk about if you are not Canadian and understand the fact that it’s our passion for the game that separates us from other countries. Look, Canadians realize that American hockey players love the game along with other countries from around the world. But there is something different when Canadian kids win these world juniors so many times over the years. Even without the best players Canada’s kids step up and there is always hero’s that take the hockey nation to the promise land. Whoever is left to play for Canada and pulls on that sweater there is a remarkable ability to come together at this time of year and show the world that we are hockey dominant no matter what the circumstances.

WORST GAME OF MY LIFE

I still remember this like it was yesterday in Montreal where I went to the final game of the Canada vs USA 1996 World Cup game years ago. You see I went  to the game with another Junior A coach and we were guests of NHLPA former Director Bob Goodenow. Bob hadn’t told us that he had got seats for us directly behind the American bench that night as he had gone to sit in the Suite with other PA members for the night. I know Bob knowing full well that the two of us being Canadian home grown Jr coaches at the time were obviously pulling hard for Canada that night. He never said where the seats were going to be in the rink that night. Only when we got to the seats did I laugh knowing full well Bob an American hockey man growing up he played for Team USA himself, had he arranged for us to sit directly behind the Team USA bench.

But unfortunately I wasn’t laughing long that night in Montreal. As not only did Canada lose to the Americans but we were  was so close to the bench we could hear the players saying to each other ” it’s our game now boys it’s our game now” That stung and was for me as a proud hockey Canadian coach who had travelled overseas to Russia, Finland  and all over the United States for hockey devastating to hear.

When my teams went to these far away places to play I always took pride in beating them. Showing them just how hard Canadians compete and we will beat you whether you are better, more skilled or not. Teams I coached would beat you with sheer determination and overcome whatever you threw at us. That night in Montreal after the game Bob said to me with a complete straight face ” how were the seats ?” It took everything I had in me to say yeah the seats were great, game wasn’t to good! Bob is a good guy and he always did subtle things like that and this was one of those times I wouldn’t take the bait regarding the placement directly behind at the time the hated American teams bench.

That was a lesson I learned that night was any hockey country can beat any other on a given night.  The passion that as Canadians you are taught at a young age to play the game with is also filtering into other Countries and was in the US that night. That night in Montreal stung and stung hard for me as a Canadian but the score far less than the Americans saying ” it’s our game now boys”! That still rings in my head today !

For Hockey God I”m Dave Frost

Boxing Day NHL Games & Picks :

December 26th, 2008

After the NHL and newspapers, Blogs and all involved in the NHL took the day off to celebrate Xmas. Everyone springs straight back into action tonight on Boxing Day. In action on the ice with 9 games on the schedule for tonight all but one are Conference match ups with perhaps the best game being the out of Conference game with the Flyers in Chicago.

Tonight’s Games :

PITT @ NJD : Take NJD, Pens have been struggling terribly since before Xmas in their last 10 games they are an out of norm 4-6-0 in those games. The Devils who have survived an early season injury to their number one goalie are 11-6-1 at home.

TOR @ NYI : Take TOR, Leafs have played well on the road as of late and after a stinker at home just before the holiday they look to bounce back. Toronto’s 500 record on the road, at home  and over all make road games no different then away games for them. Islanders are in last place in the Conference and are win less in their last 10 games with a 0-9-1 record.

BUF @ WSH : Take WSH, Caps are an excellent 13-1-1 at home and will beat the visiting Sabres who are still hanging on to the last playoff spot in the conference tied with the Canes. Caps injuries keep creeping back into the lineup and the time off will have helped that even more.

CAR @ ATL : Take CAR, Canes are tied with Sabres for that last playoff position in the Conference and should be able to prey on the weaker Thrashers, who have a losing record at home and are 6-9-2 to put them into last place in the conference.

TBL @ FLA : Take FLA, Panthers at home against the weaker Tampa club will result in a win in this cross State contest. Panthers are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games and have been playing their best hockey of the young season to almost the half way point as of late.

PHI @ CHI : Take CHIC, Hawks with their young fresh legs had a long layoff before the break and could result either in lots of energy or stale showing against the Flyers. Flyers and Hawks both sit in their respective conferences in 4th overall and have both been tough to play against. I give the edge to the younger Hawks with the layoff. Close call and probably the best game to watch of the bunch.

DET @ NSH : Take DET, Wings hold a scary record only behind the league leading Sharks of 23-6-4 for 50 points on the year. The Preds have played at times solid this season but should be no match for the Wings even at home in Nashville.

EDM @ VANC : Take VAN, Canucks playing at home hold 5th place in the conference only two points out of 4th and are 10-4-1 at GM Place. Oilers are still battling to get into the playoffs still sitting in 12 th place in the conference and are 10-9-0 on the road.

PHX @ LAK : Take LAK, Kings and Coyotes are now only 3 points away from each other in the conference from 7th to 11th place. They both have the exact same past 10 game record which is 4-3-3 but I give the edge to the Kings in their own rink in Los Angles.

Hockey God gets back to it’s regular daily blog on Hockey Saturday! Enjoy tonight’s games . . . .