Americans Lose To The Slovaks 3:5…

Has Ron Rolston Ever Heard of John the Baptist?  His head may soon be on a platter.

I haven’t watched the game, yet, but the knives are out.  I’ll have more later after I watch the game, but I’m hoping that USAHockey doesn’t cow-tow to the forces that want more aggro in the game.  

Instead of calling for Rolston’s head, USAHockey should be filing complaints with the IIHF-brass which dropped the ball after the Canada/USA game.  When will the IIHF stand up to the Canadian-dominated media and the continued descent into anti-hockey?  Where is the IIHF after what happened on New Year’s?  No reviews of the incidents after the second Canadian goal by both teams?  No review of the Boarding call on Della Rovere?  No condemnation of both teams taunting the opposing bench?  Even the NHL would have handed out suspensions after that game – to both sides.  

I’d simply urge any Hockey fan to support Rolston after the US team is being called an embarrassement and a bunch of “classless prima-donnas.”  While I must admit that there were a couple of incidents involving American players that were uncalled for and irresponsible, Rolston kept his players in check for the most part and should be commended for controlling his players at the death of the game when things could have devolved into tit-for-tat violence.

More on the game later…

But, I wonder who enjoyed this more…the Slovaks, or the Canadians?



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11 responses to “Americans Lose To The Slovaks 3:5…

  1. stuey g

    The Slovaks.
    I dont want to lose to anyone but USA.
    I watch half their team play here on a regular basis. The two teams have many friends on them. Hell, some of them are even roommates, and many have been teammates. Colin Wilson played his minor hockey in Canada. There would have been no shame in losing to the US.
    Oh ya. The IIHF is dominated by the Euros. You can’t name one thing they’ve done that is an advantage to the Americans or Canadians, except play the tourney in NA more, only for the fan base, and extra revenue in their pockets.

  2. Scott Baker

    Two questions have been on my mind since the tournament started.

    1) Why was Buffalo, NY chosen over Mpls/St. Paul for hosting the 2011 tournament?
    2) What criteria is used to calculate the schedule for pool games? In recent WJC tournaments when the US has faced Canada in pool play the US has had to play the night prior to the match-up where Canada has not. Seems like a big advantage…

  3. stuey g

    Mpls/St. Paul would be an excellent choice, but Buffalo is closer to me, so that will be nicer. lol.
    Anyway I’m sure they use the previous years results to plug into the schedule formula. 1, 4, 5, 8?, and 10? go into one pool, and the rest in the other pool. I think the schedule remains the same just by plugging the seeds into their spots.
    I checked out the previous times USA has played Canada for you, to see about an advantage.
    2008- They did not play
    2007- They played the day after both played.
    USA vs Germ early, Can vs Swe late.
    They also met in the SF, Can had bye, USA
    played QF day before.
    2006- They played pool game the day after USA
    played early vs Sui
    2005- They did not play
    2004- They played in the final with a day rest
    2003- They played in SF . USA played QF day
    2002- They did not play
    2001- They played in the QF, both having a day
    2000- They played a pool game, after both a day

    It looks like there is only one pool game where USA had to play the day before, that Canada didn’t.
    Unfortunately in a short tournament like this, playoff games have to be played on back to back nights, so Canada has been fortunate to have the bye those 2 years USA had to play a QF.
    I dont think that advantage seems as big as you made it now.

  4. Scott Baker

    Thanks for the thorough run-down. Is there a resource on the web that has all this info. in one place? My initial comment was more related to recent history when the US has fielded teams that were viewed as being competitive with the Canadians (who, regardless of the strength of the Swedes, Russians, etc., are really always the team to beat). Also, I was only looking at the preliminary rounds where the deck should, theoretically, be eavenly stacked. After pool play teams have earned the right to have a bye, so I threw that out the window. That said, over the past six years, the US and Canada have played three times in pool play:

    2004 DNP
    2005 DNP
    2006 US played CA after playing the night prior (Canada did not play the day prior)
    2007 US played CA after both played the night prior
    2008 DNP
    2009 US played CA after playing the night prior (Canada did not play the day prior)

    So, it seems, in pool play anyway, the US could be at a disadvantage two out of the three times they’ve played in the past six tournaments. Thus my question…

    Regarding my second question, unlike Canada, there are very few venues in the US in which the tournament could be held that would ensure a real home-crowd advantage. Given its proximity to Toronto, I’m not sure Buffalo is one of them. But Mpls/St. Paul would certainly be one given their incredible support for minor hockey (no knock against Buffalo here, it’s got a great hockey community, it just doesn’t compare to the support in Minny). With more tournaments in the future being held in Canada, it seems the US would want to ensure the best home-field environment for its squad. I don’t think that has happened since, maybe, Boston in the mid ’90s. Also, Minny hasn’t hosted the tourney since the early ’80s which seems like a travesty. Which lead to my question regarding how the tourney sites are selected…

  5. stuey g
    Hopefully that’ll get you everything you need.
    It all depends on where you finish the prior year for your placement this year.
    The IIHF used to hold the tourney everywhere, and until the last few years, they used smaller venues in Canada, but with the demand being there, they need to use the bigger stadiums.
    I dont think you could have the tournament anywhere in the US to have a hometown advantage. I think when they had it in Boston it was very underattended, so now they have it at bordering locations, hoping to attract spectators.
    Grand Forks may be the determining reason for that.
    St. Paul or Buffalo would attract many fans from accross the border, so I’m not sure there would be any difference. I like the idea of Minn better, just because of the hockey culture there.
    I’ve been following this tourney very closesly for 20 years. It’s is the best hockey there is in my opinion, but it really has only been jumped on by CAN fans in the last 8 or 9 years.
    At the beginning of what you said. Canadians always the team to beat. I agree with you. It’s funny, but TSN’s guys didn’t put them in the top 3 this year. They didn’t do it last year either. They have RUS, SWE, and USA all beating CAN this year.
    I hope this makes sense. I get rambling trying to answer questions. Keep them coming though.

  6. Scott Baker

    Thanks for providing the website and the consideration in answering my questions. It’s a shame that the IIHF is near-sited and isn’t willing to put the tourney in a place that would provide the US team with a “host” environment. Not sure why they stear away from Mpls/St. Paul area because, based on your comments regarding the Boston experience, it may be the only place in the US that could provide it. Marketed properly, it would sell-out with the locals in a heartbeat. Grand Forks has a great facility, but is much closer to a major population center in Canada (Winnipeg) than to any city near that big in the US. So that, in reality, is more of a Canadian-friendly local. Buffalo will be the same.
    Holding it in a smallish US city really is not an option as most Americans that are hockey fanatics are likely committed to other holiday hockey tournaments with their children or community. Extended travel and time away from their community is likely a huge obstacle. How does Canada handle this? Does the Canadian hockey world shut-down for two weeks during the WJC?

    I’m afraid that the more Canadian-centric the tournament becomes and the lack of real, true hosting opportunities, the more this tournament will evaporate into the ether in the US. It might do more to harm the spirit of the US entrants than the extremely disapointing, underperforming teams of recent years.

  7. cristobal

    Hats off to Slovakia for a great game against Sweden, and to both teams for playing a hard-hitting, clean game.
    That kid Janus was amazing.
    I think the Slovaks need to work on defensive decisions a bit, but they do look to be building up well as a team.
    Here’s to hoping you can get the Bronze, especially if you take down “team Bertuzzi.”

  8. hockeyhockeyhockey

    re: where was the IIHF after the New Year’s Day game?
    One explanation offered by Damien Cox (“Dumb Traditions” is that the US and Canadian teams remained silent on the incidents. Neither teams wanted the officials to investigate as it could result in expulsion from the tournament to their respective players, Trangradi (US) and Della Rovere (Canada). So the IIHF let the matter drop.

  9. bk

    the sad truth is that americans are bully – and most bullies tend also to be cowards. You see, its just like dropping bombs on third world countries or gunning down unarmed civilians in vietnam with automatic rifles: the big, red white and blue idiot is the toughest guy on the lot when he’s the guy with all the cards in his hand; when things get tough, though, and someone pushes back, he often folds the tent. What we saw in this tournament was a gang of teenaged pricks with profound entitlement syndromes who ran into adversity and collapsed because they couldn’t deal with it; apparently, you can’t buy gold medals in hockey or cow the opposition into giving you them.

    The yanks had the oldest team in the tournament, the biggest team in the tournament, and the fastest team in the tournament – and they choked.


  10. bk

    one more thing needs to be said:

    if canada gets the easier schedule at these events, its because it wins; the better you place, the better your seeding and the better the schedule (its how the iihf does things)

    sheesh, americans: always coming up with excuses. maybe they need to get back to all that blood doping their olympic athletes use

  11. cristobal

    bk is a piece of work. Shoddy work, but still a piece.

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