Thursday, January 3, 2013
Thursday Morning Cupcheck - A USA-Canada WJC Diary
The US/Canada blow-by-blow account that you deserve, not the one you actually would ever want.
Good morning, hockey fans! Last week we made a stunningly accurate prediction regarding the World Junior Championships -- and by that, I mean, Finland got robbed!! Still, with the top four spots still in flux, a portion of our sage prognostications still might emerge from the Rubble of Embarassment and seize the Golden Light of Being Proven Right. Since I'm up anyways and there's epic hockey to be played, here's our US versus US's Hat WJC Game Diary.
2:51am CST: Let's see if the US got past those Czech upstarts yesterday. Or was it to-day? *checks, raises eyebrows* Good. Good. Now when's the next game? Against Canada or someone, right?
2:52am: HOLY S**T.
2:54am: Just posted on the only real Dallas Stars board that the game is on in six minutes, for free, streaming on NHL.com. It's the first time since Game Two of the Stanley Cup Finals --when I realized that Dustin "A**whip" Brown was going to hoist the Cup-- that I've looked at the letters "N" "H" and "L" and not been filled with revulsion. Baby steps.
2:58am: Time to ignore my other seven open tabs and click over. We're doing this. 3am be damned.
3:00am: YES!! I made it!! 3 am, baby--aww, goddammit!
3:04am: Ok, completely unnecessary lead-ins are over and we're on.
3:10am: The US is coming out like their ball hairs are en fuego. Nice, but there's no way they keep this poo up.
3:13am: ....or can they?
APPROX. 3:15am: YYYYEEEEEAAAAAAAHHHHHHHMMMMMUUUUUUTTTTTHHHHHAAAAAFFFFF***************EEEEERRRRRSSSSS!!!!!!!
3:20am: *takes breath*
APPROX. 3:35am: YYEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHAAAAWWWWWW!!!!!
3:40am: *regains composure* Ah, that felt good. Two goals from McCabe? I'm dying to know... any relation? *tabs over*
3:41am: Hey! Eau Claire! Sweet! I used to live there! In 1976! Also, no relation to the Brian. Thank God.
3:48am: Grabbed a few 70% Off Christmas chocolates to keep up the silent fist pumping. Can't holla like I want to with my sleeping three year old in the next room. I just spent two effing hours reading effing Berenstain effing Bears books trying to get her to pass out. No way I'm doing that twice in one night.
3:51am: The downside to the 3am start time? No one to trashtalk with. A 2-0 lead after one against the most talented team in the WJC? Not something you want to let slip away without your snidest repartee reaching human ears. Although I do hope that every pink-blooded Canadian is watching this. Babies, too. Let them begin to comprehend their "country"'s fifth-rate backwater status as early as possible. No point in letting them wait until they start drinking LaBatt's while watching the Grey Cup.
3:59am: *does silent fistpump, pulls a tricep muscle* 3-0!!! That's the equivalent of like 9-0 against a real team like Finland!
4:01am: Man, rough outing for Subban. Good. Not that I got anything against the guy, but after Jeremy Jacobs' role in the lockout, I officially loathe everything about the Bruins. Including Borque, and Orr, and Char--ah, what am I saying, I can't stay mad at you, Zdeno! You'd beat me up!
Still, no more free passes for Bruins prospects. That includes you, Hamilton.
4:02am: Canada's best chance of the game, and Gibson stones him like an effing Grand Inquisitor. That save might've just sealed Canada's well-deserved and inevitable fate. 3-1 with momentum is dangerous: a two-goal deficit is nothing to this squad of young amateurs like Nugent-Hopkins and Mark Schiefele.
4:04am: That said, Seth Jones is having a rough time of it out there. Almost gave Canada two goals in the first.
4:07am: You gotta wonder about the talent disparity on these two teams not exactly lining up with the on-ice results. Is it coaching? Grit? This is the Americans' sixth game in eight days. Canada had an extra day of rest and cruised to this point with little effort. I'm getting flashbacks of Canucks-Kings Game One here. Which was quite pleasant at the time.
4:19am: NUMBER FOUR YOU GLACIER-HUMPING MOUNTYF***ERS!! EAT MOOSETAINT YOU MOLSON-SLURPING BIEBERMONKEYS!!
4:29am: Stars manimal/prospect Brett Ritchie with an amazing chance... and a big stinky bowl of bupkus to show for it. If that was against the Saginaw Spirit, it's going in.
4:30am: If there's going to be an epic comeback, it's gonna have to happen in the final 20 minutes. I'm officially holding my breath until we either go up 7-0 or there's two minutes left and we're on the powerplay.
Which, knowing the shifty and untrustworthy Canadian national character, is exactly where we'll be.
4:33am: I will say this: that Canadian penalty kill is pretty good. Although maybe that's just Seth Jones sucking on the American first powerplay unit. Man, that guy has "First Round Bust" written all over him. *secretly hopes that the five people who read this include all the GMs drafting earlier than the Stars*
4:36am: They're showing highlights of the Russia-Switzerland game during the intermission of this real game. Swiss Misses went up 3-2 in the third... and now they're showing Russia tie it up with 1:36 left in the game. On the powerplay. Naturally. Growing up during the Cold War, I'm just surprised it wasn't a 5-on-3 with the refs throwing a babushka's neckerchef over the Swiss goalie's face.
4:43am: Plan on crashing after this, if I can. Why am I dreading this third period? Has the last decade of watching Stars hockey crushed my ability to hope? To dream?
4:48am: Game on, b***ches!!
4:49am: I swear, if they pull this off... and the NHLPA and NHL do "their thing" in 5-6 hours... whatever day it is right now will forever live in Famy.
4:51am: These annoying saves by Sir Nigel Binnington VI, Esquire, are slightly more tolerable when you picture him chatting like a foppish English dandy after every stop. "Cheerio, old bean!" "Ripe shot, old hobbit, and keep your knickers right tosh!" "Pip, pip, old sausage, I lost two grandpas at Yorktown and bob's your uncle!"
4:53am: 4-on-3, and Seth Jones is just an unholy beast. He's huge, and fast, and incredibly skilled with the puck. Just realized that his earlier suckage might have been due to Canada gameplanning to him and dedicating their best defensive pairing to stopping exclusively him. Great plan so far, incidentaAWW, CRAP.
4:55am: Well, even though the shutout is gone, at least none of those syrupsucking point vultures will get an assist on that one. Still, the lack of shutout severely affects any future trash talking I'll do with my Canadian friends. Assuming I ever meet one.
5:03am: American getting their a** kicked now. STROME WITH THEnothing. Man, this guy is good. *tabs over* Let's see who drafted him. The Islanders? Good.
5:07am: GIBSON!! Just robbed the NugeHop like an armed crack addict at a finishing school.
5:09am: GIBSON!! Just robbed future Bruins f***tard Dougie Hamilton!! *tabs over* Let's see who drafted GibsAWW CRAP. Realignment time, baby!
5:11am: Americans picking it back up now. Basically, whichever team fearlessly skates down the center of the ice is dominating the game. Just like, you know, every single hockey game of all time. And every single football game. And every single basketball game. Basically just any sport of any kind ever invented, as well as all future sports that have yet to be invented. Alien sports, too. Not having played hockey since I was six, I have to wonder why players "peel off" to the outside when the formula for victory is so simple. Control The Center. Works in chess and Civ, too.
5:13am: BWWAHAHAHAHAHA!! Ok, 5-1 with four minutes left. I'm feeling a little more confident now.
5:15am: And a powerplay to boot! I wonder what those 11 GMs with first-round draft picks on Team Canada are thinking right now?
Actually, probably nothing beyond how the lockout has royally blown up in their fat jowly faces. Which reminds me... Jacobs has two first rounders on Team LeLoser. Everything's coming up Milhouse for karma to-day!
5:20am: 1:10 left, and the Canadians take a stupid penalty down by four goals in a game/tournament they were supposed to win. Worst case scenario: the Americans will still have a little powerplay time left if this goes to overtime. Keep your slim hopes up, beaverbuggers.
5:22am: 6...5...4...3...2...1... YESSSSSSSSSSssssss. NHL.com just panned to a blonde Canadian fan looking like her husband just took a s**t in the fridge. I wish I'd had the foresight to screen capture that. Can you imagine what it feels like to fly to Russia just to watch your team lose? No way her son's not on the team. Probably Hamilton's mom. I hope so, anyways.
5:24am: Now two Russian (?) dudes in suits are flanked by three pink Asian ladies holding what appear to be Marcus Wallace's suitcase from Pulp Fiction. They just gave one to some Canadian player. He looks like he's being forced at gunpoint to preside over the ritual Doing of His Uncle. An assistant captain? Gotta look that up. *tries looking it up for 20 seconds on Google, finds nothing, gives up* If it's not one of the top three google results, it simply doesn't exist.
5:30am: At this point, I don't care if the US loses to Sweden by six goals. This was totally worth it. Although that might be the sleep deprivation talking. A slightly-altered version of South Park's "Blame Canada" is playing on infinite loop in my head.
6:46am CST: Well, an hour later and not a soul is up to share in the excitement. It's every sports fan's dream to watch an epic a**beating, and this one wasn't even close. The last time we beat 'em, it was close. The Miracle on Ice was close. This was not. Canada looked like a halfway-decent team for all of four minutes, and that's when it was already 4-0 in the third.
Time to wikipedia "Swedish stereotypes" and wait for Saturday's game. Is the Swedish Bikini Team still a thing?