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Pressure too much for Team Canada's teens?

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08:22 AM ET 01.03 | Team USA is on its way to an appearance at the IIHF World Junior Championship final, courtesy Thursday's 5-1 win over Canada. The Canadians, having not won the gold medal since Ottawa in 2009, came in with high expectations for themselves and from their hockey-mad, and hockey-deprived, country. The difference between American pressure and Canadian pressure in this instance would be roughly comparable to the difference between a child's school pack and a gorilla on your back. It all raises questions: is such pressure causing the drought -- or is the drought causing the pressure? No matter, the "gold or nothing" mantra looks like a fool's chant in an era when the last four gold medals have gone to Canada, United States, Russia and Sweden.

The Globe and Mail

Malcolm Subban, Icon Sports Malcolm Subban, Icon Sports
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January 3, 2013  08:48 AM ET
QUOTE(#1):

Ever think maybe facing the pressure now is good preperation for their NHL careers? Because, frankly, this tournament means eff all. The Cup means EVERYTHING.

but crapping out here doesn't exactly endear you to the Gms around the league.
I agree, where have all the players gone?
I have the same question about english soccer though, and probably the same answer for both.
Way too easy to just "buy" a player from elsewhere, where they DO still train young talent...than to groom one I guess.

January 3, 2013  09:08 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

But one real question: Where the HELL have the good Canadian goalies gone? Do we even have a single "elite" goalie in the NHL? Cuz Subban sure as hell ain't gonna be much more than what we saw this morning (it's not all on him, but he was bad for most of this tournament), which is great for future Bruins opponents but not so great for Canada as a national team. Seriously, who the hell do we have? Not including the one-hit wonders from last season (Smith, Elliot etc).

Hmmmm..........

January 3, 2013  09:32 AM ET

WGAF

Kids.....

January 3, 2013  09:35 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

But one real question: Where the HELL have the good Canadian goalies gone? Do we even have a single "elite" goalie in the NHL? Cuz Subban sure as hell ain't gonna be much more than what we saw this morning (it's not all on him, but he was bad for most of this tournament), which is great for future Bruins opponents but not so great for Canada as a national team. Seriously, who the hell do we have? Not including the one-hit wonders from last season (Smith, Elliot etc).

Carey Price, Cam Ward, and...uh...ME!

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January 3, 2013  09:51 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

EPL is all foreign, and then the press & fans wonder why Three Lions can't make it past a quarterfinal in major tournaments anymore. The countries who are getting deep now - Spain, Germany - invested HEAVILY in youth programs. Germany especially, as the Times wrote here http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/26/sports/soccer/as-europe-struggles-g ermany-invests-heavily-in-soccer.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Investing $1 billion into a sport over 10 years is not a good idea. I'd much prefer being crappy at sports and spending that billion else where.

January 3, 2013  09:52 AM ET
QUOTE(#8):

Price maybe.

You only really need to turn out one good goalie every 12 years that will be able to represent you on the biggest international competitions.

January 3, 2013  10:04 AM ET

Wasn't there someone on these boards a few days ago suggesting that a certain American player should be eating crow? Seems that meal should be on someone else's plate.

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January 3, 2013  10:14 AM ET

Does anyone else remember Benjamin Conz?

He was the star goalie for the Swiss a few years back in the World Juniors and played amazing. He then went undrafted in two NHL drafts. He has, since the WJC, been playing in the top Swiss league, and has been amazing. T

his year in fact, despite facing NHL calibre players in the Swiss league, has posted a .932 SV%, and for comparison, Cory Schneider in the same league has posted a .914 SV%. Last year Conz posted a .912 SV% at age 20 and the year before that .906 at age 19 in the top professional Swiss league!

If you don't consider his two previous seasons all that amazing, remember that goalies usually take much longer than players to develop, and he was playing with grown men in one of the best leagues in the world. Goalies like Cory Schneider weren't putting up numbers like that at Conz's age in College. He has also shown in the WJC that he can dominate players his own age. This year, against NHL players, he has stood on his head and out played goalies like Cory Schneider.

I don't know why every passed on this goalie through 7 rounds in not one, but two drafts. And I don't know why NHL teams wont be lining up to sign this kid. He is only 21! There is no risk involved in signing him. Just sign the kid to a minor league contract and see if he turns out. He is probably better than every goalie that the Leafs have!

January 3, 2013  10:15 AM ET
QUOTE(#12):

Yeah but we've always had at least 2 (at least in my lifetime). At current time, I think saying we have even one would be a stretch, and when you look at the States with Quick, Miller and Schneider, well, balance of power could be moving south.

But in competitions like the Olympics, they can't play Quick, Miller, and Schneider at once. I'm not worried.

January 3, 2013  10:15 AM ET
QUOTE(#13):

Sorry, couldn't hear you with our two Olympic gold medals plugging our ears.

Bazinga!

January 3, 2013  10:15 AM ET

FOIL and i discussed this pre tournament....This is now 4 Junior tournaments where Canada had its weakest link in the net. Danny Limes question is big time valid. GO YANKS !!!! May the Force be with You !!

January 3, 2013  10:17 AM ET
QUOTE(#18):

FOIL and i discussed this pre tournament....This is now 4 Junior tournaments where Canada had its weakest link in the net. Danny Limes question is big time valid. GO YANKS !!!! May the Force be with You !!

Pfft...Go Sweden!

 
January 3, 2013  10:19 AM ET

And blaming Subban today is just stupid. The entire team was outplayed. You could have had the best goalie in the world in net for Canada this morning, and they wouldn't have won.

And it is tough to blame Subban for all the 4 goals he let in. He was screen pretty badly on two of them, and one was a beautiful shot.

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