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Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Canada wins Gold

Team Canada won the gold medal tonight after comfortable handling the Russian squad. After the final buzzer sounded, a huge collective sigh of relief was heard throughout the nation. Nevermind that Canada pretty much dominated the Russians throughout the game, despite relaxing considerably in the third period, no one was going to celebrate this win until the final horn squaked the last gasp. All Canadians were well aware of the ghosts of tournaments past, and now they can be laid to a peaceful rest after the satisfying results of tuesday.

Right out of the starting gate on Christmas day, Team Canada dominated their opposition in almost every category. Patrice Bergeron walked away with the tournament scoring title and the MVP award, however the gold medal showing was the direct result of a superb collective effort. The roster was saturated with talent. Many argued that this is the best National Junior Team ever to shoulder the Canadian jersey, and they may have been right, it definitely showed.

Canada outscored opposing teams 41-7 during the tournament. If you think about that for a second you will realize how ridiculous that really is.

Many thought that the Russian squad, the team that has won the most gold and overall medals in the tournament's history, should not be taken lightly and would put up the toughest opposition to Team Canada thus far. But as it turned out, Canada stuck to their game plan, played with physical authority, and was never in any danger of bowing to the Russian team.

It has been 7 years since the team has been placed on the top pedestal, a span in which the junior 'Nats claimed 4 silver and 2 bronze medals. If it were any other nation, that would be considered a very respectable record. But not in Canada, no way. I guess that's the way things are in Canada - if you don't win the gold, it's a disapointment. But, now the nation can sleep easy, the task is done, Oh Canada.

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