Thursday, September 22, 2016


It's not a done deal by any means. Team North America, you know the team everyone now loves beat the King Henrik Lundqvist and his fellow Swedes yesterday. The overtime goal in what most say was one hell of an exciting game put the NA kids in a position to move on......if and only if the Fins can beat their rivals, the Russians.

Sadly, the second period lapse Team NA suffered vs the Russians may just prevent them from moving on. By all rights they outplayed the Ruskies but BOB stopped them from tying it up even though they had a 6 on 4 for the final minute. The lapse in the second I speak of allowed the Russians to pop a few goals, just enough to outlast the kids.

The good news is that the Fins just love playing and beating the Russians so it's not out of bounds to suggest we could see the Kids in the semis. Let's hope Ovie and his boys look past the Fins and gets caught napping.

The other big story is that of the stud defenseman for the Cats, Aron Ekblad has left his team and returned home to Florida. His neck injury is reported to be "minor" but kept him out of the game vs Russia as well as the win over Sweden. It could be argued that had he played against Russia, Team NA would be 3-0. That said, Panther brass is much more concerned with his ability to play once the NHL season starts as are we fans. Sure, it would be great to see team NA advance and match up against Canada (the dream game for many Canadians) but it's much more important long term that Ekblad get healthy for the season.

So we are all Finland fans for one game. If they beat Russia then the kids move on, if not it was still more fun to watch them than it was to watch the USA squad. I will say it's been a treat to see this game played at such a high level so early in the year.

----}- Bird

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