December 31 2014 08:13AM
Today is the round robin match that everyone has been waiting for. Team Canada vs. Team Our Parents Immigrated from Canada. As a child of the 80s it seems odd to consider the US as Canada's chief hockey rival, but I can no longer trap myself in 1987 and continue to believe that the Russians are the greatest test for Canada.
This game preview could take the high road and talk about how great the US National Team Development Program is, and how I wish that Hockey Canada had something resembling anything close to that. We could talk about how this game could be a gold medal preview and features the two undefeated teams from Group A and a victory has the high stakes of a much easier path to the medal round, though losing to the Swiss or the Czechs would be unlikely for either of these teams.
December 30 2014 10:59AM
Lost in all the hubbub about the Calgary Flames winning games in dramatic fashion is the news that center Mikael Backlund - a favourite around these parts as a possession-driving young forward - is recovering from his abdominal injury.
He's recovered so much, that in fact he joined the main group for full practice on Monday prior to the Flames game versus the Los Angeles Kings. He was wearing a non-contact jersey, but this is huge progress, as he'd be a massive, massive addition to a team that's arguably still playing over its head.
But what happens when Backlund does make his return?
December 29 2014 10:21PM
On Saturday night, the Calgary Flames got an early lead against the woeful Edmonton Oilers and went into cruise control. The Oilers got a third period goal to make it close, but the Flames were good enough to keep them at bay without any effort.
Tonight's game was creepily similar, except for the fact that their opponent tonight was the Los Angeles Kings, the defending Stanley Cup champions, and that the hometown team needed a much more concerted effort to hold onto their lead and get two points.
But after two first period goals in rapid succession, the Calgary Flames held on - despite a second period Kings marker - to win their 20th game of the season, this time by a 2-1 score.
December 29 2014 10:13PM
It would appear to be a one-sided victory when you look at the scoreboard, but Team Canada's 4-1 win over Team Finland was close, hard fought one. Finland, desperate to avoid dropping three straight games to open the tournament, kept the game close until late in the third period, but ultimately couldn't contain Canada's explosive offence.
December 29 2014 03:47PM
Team Canada is off to an excellent, albeit expected start at this year's World Juniors tournament, winning their first two games with ease. That being said, anything short of a regulation win tonight could put Canada in danger of being leapfrogged by Team USA in the Group A standings.