Have you ever just flipped shit and screamed at the top of your lungs in the middle of a grocery store? Probably not because I’m assuming you’re a grown up. Well I have, but I guess my excuse was a pretty good one seeing as I was only seventeen years old and this was the last time in my eyes the United States Olympic Hockey team had any sort of relevance. I don’t know if you remember so I will throw a tiny bit of history at you. The 2010 Winter Olympics were in Vancouver, British Columbia and the United States found themselves up against Canada in the Gold Medal game. Classic scenario for the U.S. to step up right?
The worst part about this day was that I was scheduled to work at the god damn grocery store during the time of the game. I was constantly texting people asking the score, hunting for updates. This was 2010 so I didn’t have an Iphone yet, instead I had a dope ass LG Voyager that you couldn’t get on the internet with unless you wanted to get your ass whooped by your dad for spending a million dollars on like five minutes worth of data. Remember the cool ass touch screen on the front and then it flipped open with a keyboard? Phones were absolute dog shit back then, had to sit on my ten minute break with the charger wrapped around the phone three times just to get it to charge, meanwhile probably dummying a box of steak and cheddar hot pockets. Anyways…
So I got updates from people and found Canada up 2-0, typical Canadian Olympic Hockey team. Why and how are they so good!? Well the boys in stars and stripes made it 2-1 like half way through the game. I remember calling my buddy Andy and making him hold his phone up to the TV so I could put mine on speaker to listen to the last five minutes of the game while I was pretending to straighten up the shelves. Hearing the U.S. work Canada towards the last couple of minutes felt great but like I still couldn’t see them knotting it up, Canada was too good, just like they always are. Canada took a time out and it felt like the United States sort of had tiny chance to do something special, but I had no idea it was literally all just hope for my countrymen to make a miracle, no pun intended. Then all of a sudden the hockey gods threw the Americans some scraps.
This was almost 8 years ago so I don’t remember everything word for word but all I can remember is being in the cereal aisle and hearing Parise’s name yelled by the announcer. Zach Parise, the pure American patriot, buried a greasy goal with 24.4 seconds left. “OH MY GOD!!!!!!” I started freaking the fuck out and running up and down the aisles of that grocery store. Luckily it was a small store and no one was really in there. None the less I was celebrating like I was one the ice throwing the biggest hug on the captain Jamie Langenbrunner. What a name drop haha. Overtime here we come!
My body was flushed with emotion, I just wanted to tell my boss to fuck off and that I was going home to watch overtime but obviously that wasn’t an option. I was soon to be disappointed though. About half way through overtime the golden boy Crosby crosses the blue line, cycle happens, and sure enough he puts one through Miller. I swear to god I took my phone and threw it down the aisle. Didn’t even give a fuck if it broke, nothing could amount to the pain that 87 just made me feel, not even a broken Voyager. Another Olympics down, another failure. As I’m sure you know, there was more to come.
At the next Olympics we took 4th. Not a good showing for the boys, with the exception of T.J. Oshie in the shootout. So uneventful, we get shutout in the semifinal by Canada and they go on to shutout Sweden in the finals. They are a juggernaut in the truest definition. If this was ESPN they would probably be compared to the Golden State Warriors. I am so sick and tired of being let down and having hopes that the U.S. is going to produce a team that has a chance anywhere close to the 2010 squad and this is sad to say but oh well, we don’t have to watch them lose this year in the Olympics.
About a week or so ago I read this tweet and got absolutely fired up, immediately bitched to Ked about it.
I literally laughed at this, how does this roster even come close to anything Canada can put together? Just because we have two stud centers we’re a gold contender!? This is actually hilarious to me, sort of not his fault because he probably is just showing emotions based on hopes like every other USA hockey fan. This deserves one of the football broadcasting’s “Come on man!” Canada could put together a second team that would beat the brakes off of this team. Short break down by positions of Canada vs. the USA roster above.
Forwards: Crosby, McDavid, Giroux, Getzlaf, Tavares, Stamkos, Bergeron, Toews, Thornton, Seguin, Scheifele, Carter, Benn, Marchand, Couture, Johanson, Simmonds, Stone, Skinner…
Defense: Burns, Letang, Keith, Subban, Webber, Doughty, Ellis, Giordano, Seabrook, Vlassic, Ekblad, Hamilton, Pietrangelo
Goalie: Holtby, Price, Murray, Dubnyk, Crawford, Allen, Talbot
I guarantee you I am missing plenty so don’t judge me on that.
So there is almost 40 Canadian players that I feel you could put any combination of them together to beat any United States team that we try and lob at them. I guess what I am trying to say is that for the hearts of Americans it is the slightest bit okay that the NHLers aren’t playing in the 2018 games. Trust me, I am just as unhappy as the next guy that we don’t get to see more hockey at basically an all-star level, however it does feel good that I won’t have as much heartbreak and hopelessness that usually comes around every four years.
This isn’t me saying if you can’t beat them quit, it’s more so my thought that we need to get a hell of a lot better before we even throw around the words of Gold contention. I honestly feel like we are light years away. Okay I get it, Eichel and Matthews are USA Hockey’s saviors right? Well for the record there are plenty of Canadian centers I would still take over both of them. Are we moving in the right direction? Sort of, I wouldn’t really call it moving but more like crawling. So I ask America one thing, please start force feeding your kids hockey. Like on a disgusting level. I’m begging you. I can’t watch Canada win another ten Olympics in a row, it’s killing me. Fuck, even Sweden sprinkled one in there. Maybe we need to start blood doping and using HGH, take a page out of the Russian’s book. Sorry just watched Icarus on Netflix, documentary about Russian Olympic conspiracies.
Never the less hockey as a whole in the U.S. needs to grab itself by the balls and step up. Give Phil the thrill some love and get us a Gold Medal, whenever the fuck we get back into the games. For now I’ll just watch Olympic curling and bobsledding.