Team Canada a Little Weak???

Discussion in 'International Tournaments' started by BigAl, Dec 15, 2006.

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  1. BigAl

    BigAl Registered User

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    I'm usually dissapointed with team Canada's selections for the team, although they usually do well no matter what the team looks like. This year is no different, but I'm seriously wondering if Canada will have the offense to get it done. I wouldn't change a thing with the defense and goalies...they are perfect, but the forwards are lacking some offensive punch imo. What are some other opinions out there? I'm obviously cheering for Canada, but here is my unbiased predictions for Gold, Silver, and Bronze:

    Gold: Czechs
    Silver: USA
    Bronze: Canada
     
  2. Lalonde

    Lalonde Registered User

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    IMO,the offence is stronger than it was last year.
     
  3. Rexor

    Rexor Registered User

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    Wow, I wish you were right but this won' t happen I' m afraid. The Czechs would
    never omit someone like Tavares or Esposito. I' m not sure how many Czech
    players would make Team Canada actually. You' ve got a huge edge in junior hockey.
     
  4. The Saurus

    The Saurus Registered User

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    They are only weaker at the coaching position (although that could be marginal). Everything other facet of the game, with the exception of goaltending, they are equal to or better than last year.
     
  5. FrankMTL

    FrankMTL Registered User

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    I'm not so sure about that....Pogge was great last year but was a bit unknown before the tournament. Price or Irving can be just as good..they are both highly touted prospects..
     
  6. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger 2 is better than one

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    I don't think Canada looks "weak" by any stretch. I do, however think this is a pretty wide open tournament where several teams have a chance to win gold.
     
  7. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

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    Do the Czechs have more scoring than Canada?? How about the US? I think u underestimate the skill Canada IS bringing. Especially the production we will get from the back end.
     
  8. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    I was more concerned about scoring last year than this year. You'd assume that Toews, Cogliano and Downie would be better than last year. Toews and Cogliano especially need to give this team more. If they do that, then that's a great start.

    Bryan Little is my darkhorse pick to lead the tournament in scoring. He's 19 and he has terrific hockey sense and offensive ability. Marchand is another newcomer with strong offensive skills. If Sam Gagner can parlay his offensive prowess from the OHL to the larger ice surface in a short tournament, scoring won't be a problem.

    While our 87 and 88 (and one 89) forwards aren't going to be confused with our 85's, it's not a terrible group. And this team will get a lot of production from it's defence. The defence is likely even more offensively potent than last year's dangerous crew.

    Irving will be fine in goal. He thrives with a lower shot count (20-25 per game) and that's what he'll be facing playing behind Canada's defence.

    Last year's Team Canada squad averaged four goals per game. This year's team should be able to at least match that. If they do, they will win gold, because of the strength of the defence and the overall team concept.
     
  9. knights2005

    knights2005 Registered User

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    God is bang on (that sounded weird). It's likely this year's team should be able to match if not improve upon last year's goals against. Scoring will not be a problem this year and I agree we should be able to score more than last year. I don't even see Little as a darkhorse for the scoring race; he will be counted on as one of our point producing forwards and I expect him to average at least a point/game.

    But if we're not getting the scoring punch we should be, players will be shuffled. Last year, Downie's playing time increased heavily as the tournament wore on because there wasn't enough production coming from the top two lines (Pouliot and Latendresse did nothing while Toews and Cogliano were expected to do more). If Gagner is being pencilled in as the 13th forward and we're firing blanks, Hartsburg has seen enough of him this year to know he should be moved up to one of the top two lines. I think Gagner should see first unit powerplay time anyway even if he's the 13th forward. Although I don't have the official stat, I'd be willing to bet no other player on this team practices or has played as much time on the pp as Gagner this year. No disrespect to the NCAA guys, but I really don't think they play enough games to gain the experience to execute well enough on the powerplay compared to the CHL guys.

    Also, don't underestimate the ability of checkers like O'Marra and Pyatt to chip in with a goal here and there. These guys should produce more than they did last year. But even if we're not scoring 4 or 5 goals/game, this team has been built to win the 1 goal games, if that's what it takes. This team will hit and check the opposition to death.

    If I had to name one concern, it would have to be coaching. This is a roster that Sutter would have gone with; let's hope Hartsburg knows how to steer it.
     
  10. vbet*

    vbet* Guest

    They havent played one game and they are weak already?
     
  11. Blades 0f Steel

    Blades 0f Steel Registered User

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    Coming from you??

    I'm shocked!
     
  12. Lessy

    Lessy Registered User

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    As always goaltending is a question mark. I say as always because it's such a short tournament that you need to play the hot hand as opposed to the better goalie over long stretches, case and point with Fleury in his second year. Everyone expected him to dominate but he was just way off his game. I don't know what to expect this year between the pipes but they don't have to count on many shots because looking at this defence, I can't recall the last time Canada looked this good at the back end (maybe the year with the 85's Seabrook, Coburn, Phaneuf, etc:dunno: ). The defence is going to play a huge role in Canada's scoring I'm thinking. I was mostly surprised with the cutting of Claude Giroux, I really thought he could thrive on the big ice. Up front there's really no proven gamebreaker which worries me but the same was the case last year. Cogliano is the guy I'm expecting to lead the team offensively although maybe thats my Oilers homerism kicking in. There's also a few unknowns for me that I've never heard of... Cliche, Helm and I'm not too familiar with Marchand either. It's going to be interesting to see how these guys fare for me anyways. There's always a less popular player that is not well known that steps up and has a huge tournament... Clarke McCarthur was like that for me.
     
  13. The Saurus

    The Saurus Registered User

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    Pogge was the MVP of the tournament. Lets hope either of the goaltenders could repeat Pogge's performance.
     
  14. FrankMTL

    FrankMTL Registered User

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    Yes, but would you have thought that going in?? Of course not...not very many people did. The talent is defenitly there to repeat that feat with either of Price or Irving...but who knows if that will happen.
     
  15. Jason MacIsaac

    Jason MacIsaac Registered User

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    First chance I had to talk about the roster. I think they made a mistake with handing last years members a free pass. Staal and Parent probably don't deserve to be there based on their season up to now and certainly didn't look great out there in camp. I think their defense is overrated and teams like Sweden and USA will create a lot of chances with pressured giveaways.
     
  16. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    How do you not bring Staal and Parent back? I don't care if they've been healthy scratches on their respective teams. Reality is they were two of the top five defencemen in last year's tournament. They're smart, they're steady and they have great anticipation.

    They didn't need a great camp. They'll be great during the tournament. Both have that big-game mentality. Just ask Kessel and Malkin.

    Staal, Bourdon and Parent played great for Canada at the WU17 in 2005. Russell, Letang and Franson are talented puck-movers who should have no problem adjusting to international ice.
     
  17. Jason MacIsaac

    Jason MacIsaac Registered User

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    Well that proves that the camp is basicly BS and they have their team picked before hand.
     
  18. canucksfan

    canucksfan Registered User

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    Of course they will take the players that played with the team last year. Only one team they haven't done that and that was with Olivier Michaud. Experience is such a huge thing at this tournament and generally the more people you have that played in previous WJC the better chance you have to win.

    There were quite a bit of forward spots open at this year's camp. I bet you a lot of the Team Canada brass had Esposito making the team. Esposito's poor play at the camp made the scouting staff's job easier. If Tavares would have stepped up his play he would have made it. In additon, Giroux was considered a lock but didn't have a good camp so he got cut.

    This camp wasn't useless and will never be useless. It also builds chemistry and team bonding as well.
     
  19. a little weak? dear lord, Canada is one team I wish not to face. They are strong, offensively defensively and they are the toughest of everyone. THey will smash your face in, they wil smash everyones face in.
     
  20. NewHabsEra*

    NewHabsEra* Guest

    Who will be the starter, Irving or Price?
     
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