Updates: 07.06.2021 10:22
Riga – A unique story in an unusual setting was written by the Canadian hockey players at the World Championships in Riga. After three matches, they did not have a point in their account and only one team was worse in the tournament at that time – Italy due to the score. But while the Italians remained at zero, the Canadians defied their fate, happily slipped into the playoffs, and completed their pilgrimage in the finals against the Finnish defenders with a winning goal in overtime. At 66:26, Nick Paul decided.
“It’s something incredible. It was really extraordinary to lead this group all the way to gold. I’m sure a lot of people have already written us off in the early stages of the tournament. But we continued to trust each other. And we held on to it until the full And because we got to the end of the journey, it was a sacramentally good tournament, “said Canadian captain Adam Henrique, who scored an important equalizer for 2: 2 in the final in the 53rd minute.
For the first time, the world champion is the team that lost four times in the tournament. Canada has the third gold in the last six championships played, in which it also won two silver medals.
In the final, which was a replay of the last match of the World Championship 2019 in Bratislava, where the Finns celebrated after the result of 3: 1, the Finns clearly demonstrated their steadfastness. They succeeded, even though they lost twice. “I’m really very proud of these boys,” said coach Gerard Gallant. “They never gave up, even though we started the tournament badly. And we entered it really badly. But they fought, managed several very even matches and finally the extra time by gold,” added Gallant, whose charges eliminated Russia in the quarterfinals and semi rival USA.
Maxime Comtois played a very important role in the final. He tied himself at 1: 1, assisted at the second shot. “I will remember the misery and adversity of the fate we faced. When our roster was published, I remember those comments. People gave us absolutely no chance. They were dissatisfied with what team the Canadian hockey management sent to the championship. But we showed “How they were wrong. Yes, we had bad times, but when it came to something, we played good hockey. And now we have gold,” Comtois said.
“Even in the extra time we went with the only idea of what we managed to get out of for the whole tournament. Nothing was easy. Three defeats at the beginning, we lost to the Russian team … But we said we could just do it again. And we went into overtime relaxed, “Comtois added.
Even better was the final point for two players who experienced a defeat the year before last in Bratislava, where the Canadians were in the final in the role of the favorite. “We knew we had a tough battle ahead of us because the Finns play great and well-organized hockey and it was clear during the tournament that they never give up. Plus, once they take the lead, it’s really hard to catch up with them. But we did it too. and they overcame, so there was little reckoning, especially for me and ‘Stecha’ (defender Troy Stecher), “Henrique praised.
As many as eight Finnish players could enjoy the defense, but they did not wait. “Then it was about one goal. There were a lot of such matches in the tournament. Unfortunately we lost at the least convenient time. Of course it hurts a lot, but I’m still proud of this team. We played well and we were close to winning “Here it is hockey,” said Captain Marko Anttila.
“Overall, I’m really proud of the performances our team has shown here. We didn’t lose a single match in the tournament in elementary time and the players fought tremendously. I can’t do anything but pay tribute to them,” said coach Jukka Jalonen.
Source: České noviny – hlavní události by www.ceskenoviny.cz.
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