Obviously the USA/CAN rivalry has a ways to catch up all time with the CAN/RUS one. But right now if you had to pick a better rivalry which one is it?
Take into account the Olympics, WJC and Worlds. Many will say the USA has surpassed Russia as Canada's #1 most hated foe. Others in their heart of hearts still want to beat the "commies" more than anything over any other team
definitely canada/usa. the americans have emerged with their new core.
russia's been in the middle of an identity crisis when it comes to hockey in the last few years. lots of flash, but little finish. until their national program can put teams together that actually plays like a team, the russia/canada rivalry will become nothing more than a memory. in fact, the canada-russia rivalry is almost purely based on memories from the 70s and 80s. there has not been any classic matchups between the two countries in recent memory at all.
I'm thinking anyone under 35 is going to say USA and the majority of guys over 35 would say Russia still...there is just so much history between Canada and Russia that isn't there with the USA yet...but I give USA hockey big credit for continually coming up big in these tournaments when on paper they are definitely underdogs...
Going forward and with the next games in Sochi I would be shocked if Canada met the US in the final again...but wouldn't be surprised at all to see Russia-Canada...
There are 7 teams capable of winning, so for sure, who knows. What I'm saying is that on paper the most LIKELY matchup is Russia-Canada. Before this tournament I would have put 5 teams ahead of the US. But the USA played with ton of heart, youthful enthusiasm and superb goaltending. As the team is still maturing they should be peaking for Sochi, so looking way way ahead they could be the 3rd or 4th most powerful team with Sweden heading into that tournament...so yeah they could very well make the final like they did here...but I doubt it...
im surprised by the poll. CAN // RUS is always intense games, we constantly leapfrog each other for international dominance, and at any particular tourney we are both always favorites to win it all.
it has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with the fact we are both the two greatest international hockey nations for the past 50 years. is that changing? probably, but for the time being its russia and US a distant but always enjoyable 3rd.
Canada / USA includes men's and women's hockey, is on going throughout the year all the way down to intro levels, off season during the triple AAA tournaments,further more extending to other sports, skiing, skating, cross border softball tournaments, junior football all-star games, etc.