What a difference one game makes. It seemed the Canadians were burnt as French toast and almost disappointed a homeland in which tears engulfed the psyche of a sensitive nation, its expectations submerged. All the possible dreams of conquering a gold medal unraveled, and it was difficult to trust in Team Canada.

Bad vibes were felt immensely, when a disastrous breakdown scourged the Canadians and prevented fulfillment last Sunday. From a global standpoint, hockey is taught, introduced, and played on several continents, becoming a sporting origin within most cultural backgrounds. The U.S. men’s hockey team confirmed it’s a universal game, after beating the Canadians in a 5-3 win at the Winter Games. That prompted vulgar language in the stands, angering bitter fans waving the maple leaf flags to serenade “(Beep) USA! (Beep) USA!"

The ominous settings have disappeared, and suddenly Team Canada finds an adrenaline rush and menacingly returns to contention, following a must-needed win against Russia. It turned into a one-sided contest, embarrassing and thrashing the Russians in a game that anticipated an epic clash between two tough-driven, hard-fighting rivals.

Two nemesis were unsympathetic and expected to push and shove. There, however, were bullies on each side exploiting hard and physical contact. More impressively, Canada awakened on the brink of elimination and dismissed a pitiful defeat to Team USA, whose dramatic and profound conquests continues to appease a patriotic nation awaiting a miracle, perhaps, the biggest since 1980.

What we’re witnessing is an amazing sequel of Disney movies, such as the Mighty Ducks capitalizing amid a brilliant run or a Miracle on Ice engraving a lifetime memory. But as of now, the Canadians are still alive, advancing to the medal-round mired in uncertainty, realizing Canada still has a chance at redemption in a possible rematch against the U.S. It was visualized after trampling the Russians in a surprising 7-3 win, stunning its fans, the U.S., and Russia.

Their mojo resulted in an 8-2 pounding on Tuesday to the undermined Germany, before encountering a dynamic test against Russia. No one envisioned a sudden revival after losing to the United States. No one predicted that the Canadians would even be in the picture of reaping Olympic gold. Well, they’re back in the picture with a victory over its toughest opponent and archenemies. It’s much too early discounting the Canadians, strengthening into a sumptuous force.

Huh? Wait, Canada beat Russia?

Yes, sir. Yes, madam.

The Canadians are back. They’re in good position to claim a gold medal, to instill happiness and humanity, ending all failures of coming up short in the medal count. Routing the Russians in a convincing romp is enough to catch our attention so that we reconsider them before throwing them on the backburner. This amends critical ideas and reforms a logical purpose in which Canadians were considered as the primary contenders, even though it may sound like a cliché.

The resurgent of the Canadians proves tremendous star power and superior depth. In large part, Russia’s goalie Evgeni Nabokov was absent and failed defending the net, yielding a total of four scored-shots in the first period. By the second, he had surrendered six shots, which turned into an ugly rout.

The biggest star was Canada’s Ryan Getzlaf, who finished with two assists and had a goal. Even Corey Perry contributed and eased a shot into Russia’s net. Almost surprisingly, Sidney Crosby finished the night scoreless, but there really wasn’t a need for his contributions when the Canadians played with much balance and aplomb.

Let’s say it was a total team effort.

If there’s a shutdown defense, keep in mind, not much is needed offensively. To simplify things, Roberto Luongo, who took over for Martin Brodeur after the U.S. loss, shut down the Russians, making 25 saves and remaining focus in a position that seemed to be their weakest link. On greater imports, Alexander Ovechkin was quiet and unsuccessful in posing as a villain. In a dull onslaught, the Canadians were more aggressive and prepared for a mental and physical attack, demolishing the Russians early.

The competition featured two of the NHL stars, in which a one-sided contest wasn’t anticipated between Sid the Kid vs. Alexander the Great. But indeed, the Canadians responded when desperate times called on the biggest stage. Most of all, they prevailed in a pivotal game.

Favored to own the podium in hockey was Canada, understanding the ramifications of securing tradition and cultural beliefs within a country where hockey is admired and appreciated. Given its brilliant win, the Canadians repossess top regards in a sport originated in Canada.

Suddenly, this Canadian sport seems rational.

It’s not over yet.


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