Team Canada has so far been perfect at the World Cup of Hockey. They came flying out of the gate and dismantled an overmatched Czech team by a score of 6-0 for their first win of the tournament.
They had a few days off before what was supposed to be their most difficult test. It was a meeting with the rival American team that fans have been keeping a close eye on. With a win, Team Canada would clinch themselves a berth in the tournament’s Semifinal. The United States, who already had one loss under their belt, were playing in desperate hopes of avoiding elimination.
After the dust cleared on an extremely entertaining hockey game, it was the Canadian side that emerged victorious and the United States left to lick their wounds. They are now officially eliminated from the World Cup, while Canada will move on to the Semifinals.
Skill, Speed and a Winning Mentality
Team Canada is made up of some of the best players in the hockey world. Even though they had a slow start to the game, they were able to bounce back in a huge way very quickly.
Ryan McDonagh, the captain of the New York Rangers, struck first and provided the Americans with the lead. It wasn’t long after that Matt Duchene and Corey Perry roared back for the Canadian squad, who eventually took the game by a score of 4-2.
Team Canada was also lead by superstar netminder Carey Price, who made 34 saves through three periods. Despite the win, there is something to consider. This was not the best game that Canada could have played. They came out of the gate a bit tentative and it showed by letting the Americans get on the board first.
Team Canada was able to come back in a hurry, which is a testament to the talent of each player on the roster. The Americans wanted to play a game built on grit and physicality. That only seemed to remind the Canadian squad that the way to beat them is to use speed and skill, something their roster is filled to the brim with.
Tavares beautifully sets up Bergeron pic.twitter.com/s3Qfs4CkF2
— steph (@myregularface) September 21, 2016
It wasn’t a flawless victory by any means. The Americans were excellent on draws, which led to Canada having to chase down the puck and fall behind in the play. And, as mentioned before, the Americans had a much faster start to the game, even though their lead didn’t last long.
But when all is said and done, the Canadian squad played the game they needed to win. They generated chances, capitalized on a few greasy goals and ultimately wore the United States down as the game went on. Team Canada executed head coach Mike Babcock’s system to perfection and, despite that, could have played better. That’s the crazy part.
Mike Babcock: "We weren't as good as we're capable of being tonight."
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) September 21, 2016
It was an incredibly satisfying win for Team Canada, who are looking to continue their ways all the way to the World Cup Finals. They look like the favourites now, but in a single elimination game, anything can happen.