BY BRADY STIFF
Hey in case you haven’t heard, the Winter Olympics kick off tonight in Vancouver.
I’m not really looking forward to the Olympics this time. It’s not that I usually go crazy about the Olympics, but I usually find something good to watch.
I think the only thing I’m really looking forward to this year is the hockey tournament. Maybe it’s because there’s six Blackhawks competing for three different countries, and I want to watch them. Maybe it’s because there really aren’t many riveting sports in the Winter Olympics besides hockey.
Either way, I’m not looking forward to figure skating taking over NBC for two weeks.
Speaking of the Olympic Hockey Tournament, I think the Canadians will meet the Russians for the gold medal. I know, I know, they’re the top two seeds, but it’s clear why.
Both teams have excellent goaltending, and plenty of firepower on offense.
For Canada, you’ve got the likes of Sidney Crosby, Dany Heatly, and Patrick Marleau at forward. I think all of those guys strike fear into the hearts of opposing goaltenders. I didn’t even mention Jerome Iginla, Rick Nash, and Jonathan Toews.
On the blue line, Canada has some of the best in the NHL. Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger are wily veterans. Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith already have great chemistry from being the first D pairing for the Blackhawks, so it only makes sense to keep them together for the Olympics.
The Russians put guys like Evgeni Malkin, Ilya Kovalchuk, and of course Alex Ovechkin out there, as good a trio of forwards as any. I think they’re weaker than Canada on the blue line, though. While they have the likes of Andrei Markov and Sergei Gonchar, I think good offenses might be able to carve them up.
The Americans are going to have to pull off a minor miracle to get to the gold medal game. They’ll have to end up beating Canada at some point, and even if they beat them once in group play, they’ll have a hard time getting past them again later.
I’ll be watching with interest, especially since there are Blackhawks on three different teams. I haven’t mentioned Slovakia yet, which has Marian Hossa and Tomas Kopecky. I hope nobody gets hurt and ruins their NHL season…especially any of the Blackhawks.