I don't know too many people who didn't get up nice and early to catch the Gold Medal Game on Sunday morning here in Calgary, I guess the only question really became whether or not you went to the bar or not. No matter where you watched Canada take on Sweden to defend their Olympic title, you were treated to one hell of a game, as the Canadians didn't disappoint, rather they put on a clinic on how to play defense in a high-pressure situation.
As expected, it was a pretty tight game between the two best teams in the tournament, as both Canada and Sweden went into the game undefeated and looking to stay that way. The 1st period, early on, had that feeling that it would only take one goal, maybe two, to win it, as both goalies, Carey Price and Henrik Lundqvist, were sharp and the defenses were hanging on well to what the opposition was throwing at them.
Just before the 13-minute mark in the opening frame, Canada was able to break through with a good cycle play, which found Jonathan Toews in front of the net with time, squeaking the puck through Lundqvist's 5-hole and opening the scoring. From there, Canada was able dictate the play and finish the frame with a 1-0 lead.
The 2nd period was more of the same, as the Swedes were not able to make any great pushes on the Canadian goal and around the 6-minute mark, Sidney Crosby converted on a turnover, tucking a breakaway goal in past the Swedish netminder and Canada was up 2-0.
Sweden ended up being outshot in the middle frame, 11-9, and did not really pose that much of a threat, which gave the feeling that the 2-0 lead was going to be enough.
In the 3rd, Canada outshot Sweden 13-4, added another unassisted goal from Chris Kunitz, again capitalizing on a Sweden turnover in their own zone and in total, Carey Price only had to make 24 saves for his second consecutive shutout in the tournament and Canada went home with the gold medal, winning 3-0.
Price was again the leader in points, earning the win and the shutout for a 4-point effort in the game. Toews, who opened the scoring in the 1st period, was credited with the golden goal, giving him 2 points on the day. Both Crosby & Kunitz's goals were unassisted, so there wasn't very many points handed out in the game.
Price was just 1 point shy of a tie for the tournament-best, which was taken by Henrik Lundqvist, who finished with 15 points. Phil Kessel was the top forward and Erik Karlsson was the top defenseman, each of them finishing with 9 points. Lundqvist was taken 13 times, while Karlsson was taken 11 times, but Kessel was not taken at all.
And with that, 10 days at the Olympics are in the books and no one could catch Rob A.'s first team, as he finished with 99 points, 5 points better than Curtis G. and 8 points better than Chris J..
It really looked like the idea of putting in two teams allowed him to make some extra choices that he may not have taken if he had only submitted one team. Well, if the NHL goes to South Korea in 2018, you might want to consider doing the same thing, spending that extra $10 and putting in that extra team.
Well, if you're looking for some playoff hockey pools, you know where to come! It will be much of the same thing, in terms of the sheet and the entry. Thanks for playing all, hopefully you had a great time!
Congratulations to Rob, your money is on the way... I just have to break a few legs first.