Stepan, Callahan, and McDonagh on Team USA (Continued U.S. Roster Discussion)
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01-01-2014, 10:52 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Originally Posted by
i thought it would be the IIHF/IOC but i guess its the host nation.
im also pretty sure Canada has struggled on larger ice in the past
(could someone confirm or deny this?) so this should be pretty interesting. Russia is home and most of their players have had experience on that ice size. it really becomes a different game.
Interestingly, Canada has done quite well on larger ice historically:
You can go right back to the historic 1972 Summit Series between Team Canada and the Soviet Union. The Soviets, who had virtually no experience of playing on NHL rinks, won two and tied one out of the four games in Canada, while Team Canada won three times on the larger ice at Luzhniki Arena in Moscow, even though this was the first time most of the Canadians had ever seen a big rink.
Two of the USSR’s most memorable wins were accomplished on small rinks: the 8-1 victory over the host country in the 1981 Canada Cup final in Montreal and the 6-0 thrashing of the NHL All Stars at the Madison Square Garden in New York in 1979.
Fast forward to modern times. Canada has been international hockey’s most consistent performer in the last six-year period, with all its IIHF wins coming on international sized rinks. The 2002 Olympic gold medal was won in Salt Lake City, USA, but the rink was enlarged to meet IIHF standards. The 2003, 2004 and 2007 men’s World titles were won on big ice sheets in Helsinki, Prague and Moscow.
Conversely, Canada was not able to capitalize on the “advantage” of hosting the 2008 World Championship in Quebec City’s ancient and small Le Colisée. The 72nd World Championship--the first ever in Canada --was won by Russia, with all its players having learned their hockey fundamentals on big-ice rinks.
The players you select matter more than the ice size.
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