Canada vs. United States - 02-21-10

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

-Uh. Wow.

-This game has so much hype. So much hoopla. When the schedules came out, this was the game everyone circled and said, "This is the one to catch." It was just a relegation round game, but there was so much built up about this one single game. And it met those expectations.

-There was atmosphere with the Canadian home crowd. There was intesity from the drop of the puck to right when Ryan Kesler scored an empty netter late in the third. There was hitting. There was pile ups at the net. There were rushes up and down ice. This was the sport of hockey at its best.

-Mike MIlbury and Ed Olczyk each had a rant in the pregame about how Canada doesn't respect the United States. And they are right. The United States has alway been looked down by the snobs north of the 49th parallel. But not now. At least for today. North America's team is the United States for one night at least.

-Before we portray this as some huge monumental upset, don't forget the United States like Canada, are the only two teams with an entire roster of NHL players. This wasn't Belaruse or Switzerland beating Canada. This was a team of top flight NHL professionals.

-What was so key was the United States' start. They went at the Canadian net and Martin Brodeur. They got an early lead and that took the Canadian fans out of it somewhat.

-What does this mean for the United States within this tournament? Well they get a bye in the preliminary round. Canada will have to take a long route to a medal. So don't put too much into the game. Nothing has been solved in these games other than some seedings.

-Ryan Miller was fantastic tonight. He made a statement tonight. He showed he's one of the top five goaltenders in the world. He made 42 huge saves.

-Martin Brodeur looked old. He looked like a guy who is five years past his prime. At least on the international stage.

-Sidney Crosby had a rough game. He had the goal that got Canada back into the game late, but he was on the ice for the United States' first three goals and he even accidently re-directed the first goal by Brodeur. And his penalty early in the third didn't help matters. Crosby needs to rebound immediately.

-Looks like Crosby finally found a way to beat Brodeur this season (ZING!).

-Brian Rafalski (above) has been amazing for the United States this tournament. He just knows how to get the puck on net. And he such a good player defensively. Assuming Jordan Staal isn't on the ice.

-Where was Jarome Iginla?

-Patrice Bergeron got 5:23 of ice time. We realize Canada was chasing the United States on the scoreboard much of the game, but Bergeron needs more ice time. He's a fantastic defensive player and that's why he's on this roster. Defense. Perhaps if he had more ice time, some of the United States' offense might've been nullified.

-Canada led in shots, 45-22.

-Patrick Marleau led the game with six shots.

-Paul Stastny led Canada with four.

-Duncan Keith led the game with 24:05 of ice time.

-Crosby led all Canadian forwards with 17:23 of ice time. He had three shots, one goal, a minus-3 (ouch), and two penalty minutes.

-Brooks Orpik had 20:57 of ice time.

-Ryan Malone only had 6:04 of ice time and as a minus-1.

-Bad night to be a former Penguin with the United States. Ryan Whitney had 5:22 and was a minus-1.

-United States and Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson must feel good to be in Canada for the first time in a long time.

-We don't blame NBC for putting this on MSNBC. We blame the NHL. They allow the Peacock to make decisions like this. They give DIck Eberosl carte blache with their league and their players. They went figure skating which, like it or not, gets big ratings. And ratings are the only justification NBC needs for that decision. Gary Bettman and company had to do a better job of selling this game to NBC.

-Dejan Kovacevic is rounding up quotes.

-Game summary.

(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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