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12-29-2003, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by G Man 77
Last year's club and most of those in years past were just as physical (aka Tootoo for example)... but still the team also had tons of speed on the rush, very creative and exciting offensively.

This bunch just cycle until their shift is over, and score when it's time to go to the bench for a change... all ugly goalmouth scrambles, except for a few incoming D men and of course Sydney "thank god for him" Crosby who'll show us glimpses of good hockey skills here and there.

This team was built for size only, that's why a lot of the top scorers weren't even invited to camp... I can live with them being cut during camp, but not even being invited is just a joke.
I think you're noticing that Canada hasn't faced adequate competition yet more than anything else. The best defense is keeping the puck deep in the offensive zone, and Canada's been able to dominate all their opposition down low. So of course they'll keep it there. Even Crosby's line has kept it deep and cycled for the most part.

Once Canada faces adequate competition (see: Czechs, Russians, USA), there will be more excitement and end to end hockey. This is a particularly weak Finnish team that Canada faced, the Swiss are a growing hockey nation but still not all that strong, and of course the Ukraine. The lopsided, grinding games happen every year against weaker teams, we're just not accustomed to the first three games all being against weak competition.

It's true that this Canadian team is bigger than usual and able to dominate along the boards much better than in the past, but I think they've got a load of talent and skating ability. They're more than capable of playing good transition hockey, there just hasn't been a need yet. Also keep in mind that since this is a younger Canadian team, and bigger than usual, they've got far more raw talent. Last year's team was smaller, older and had more polished talent (Wellwood, Roy, Tootoo, Eminger, Colaiacovo, Lupul, Bouchard, etc.)

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