Thursday, May 12, 2005


World Championships: Down to the Final Four

With Russia defeating Finland 4-3 in a shootout and the Swedes edging the Swiss 2-1, the Final Four is set for Saturday.

I was able to watch most of the replay of the Canada/Slovakia game. The action was fast-paced and intense. Tom Benjamin called it 'white knuckle', and I probably would have enjoyed it if it wasn't a 'replay'.

Since I knew the result (and didn't like it), I just couldn't enjoy the game very much...which is a shame. I'm not the type who can ever leave a game to be watched later...if the game is being played, I need to know the score.

It also doesn't help that the commentators and every TV personality constantly butcher the Czech and Slovak names (yeah yeah, I've beaten that dead horse a few thousand times).

Martin Brodeur
From the game...

1. Martin Brodeur's save on Zigmund Palffy's penalty shot was, as one of TSN's talking heads stated, 'Sick'.

2. I love it with Pavol Demitra is fired up. He's often very low key, like Alex Mogilny, and it's not too often these days that he plays with such fire. Perhaps getting out of St. Louis has helped him rediscover some passion. Listening to Keith Tkachuk's lame-ass jokes all the time would probably anger even the Dalai Lama.

3. Jan Lasak sucked eggs in this game...Thornton beat a flat-footed Chara cleanly to the outside for the 5th goal and Chara deflected the puck nicely. Lasak misplayed the redirect and Slovakia was thus finished. Although Jan made some nice saves, he let in some terribly weak goals and didn't steal the game like he could have.

So, I went a weak 2 for 4 in my predictions for that round...moving onto the Semis

Canada 4 - Russia 3
Like I would ever predict Russia to beat Canada. Not now, not ever!
Canada will struggle defensively and Brodeur will probably be shaky again (Apart from one or two very nice saves), but Canada will overpower a weaker Russki squad.

Czechia 3 - Sweden 2 (shootout)
Czechia plastered the USA with plenty of shots, but I expect these two teams to revert to their usual defensive shells. I'm taking the Czechs in their favoured shootout.

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