The hopes for Canada were high, much like any international hockey competition. Team Canada was from the accounts I have read (my day job kept me from watching any games) was strong with Edmonton Oilers winger Jordan Eberle providing offence and Devan Dubnyk as the third goalie. This week, team Canada beat Norway 3-2 on Saturday May 7th, and Sweden and Magnus Paajarvi on Monday 3-2. The happiness and good times ended on Thursday however. In the quarter finals, against Russia, team Canada suffered their first loss 2-1 and found themselves out of medal contention.
Paajarvi, and Robert Nilsson along with the rest of team Sweden beat Germany 5-2 to advance to the semi-finals against the Czech republic and Jaromir Jagr, the story of the week with his hat-trick and outstanding play for a 39 year old as the Czechs eliminated the United States. The Swedes didn't take their foot off the gas pedal Friday, beating the Czechs 5-2 and advancing to the gold medal round on Sunday.
The Edmonton Oilers have been quiet this week; no signings, no press releases and besides Jordan Eberle and Devan Dubnyk, no competitions. So, let's turn to the WHL and Oilers' prospect Drew Czerwonka. The WHL finals wrapped up Friday night as the Kootenay Ice beat the Portland Winterhawks 4-1, taking the best of seven series 4 games to 1.
The NHL.com draft experts have been talking about the 2011 NHL entry draft. The results were unanimous, they would all select Ryan Nugent Hopkins first overall. No, this is not anything new, or surprising and there looks as though this is the opinion of three draft experts but maybe this draft will be slightly more clear cut than last year.
Ryan Jones, Taylor Chorney and Ryan Whitney are tweeting away about their summers. Jones is enjoying his time at the lake with his dog Bailey and is taking some yoga core classes. Whitney complains about the bad and raves about what he loves in and about his home town of Boston as well as is participating in Bikram (hot) yoga. Chorney seems to be enjoying the weather and sports in Minnesota. Taylor Hall is golfing and well, it appears he still hasn't gotten over Jordan Eberle's first NHL goal that stole the spotlight for the year. Oilers' prospect Tyler Bunz is training and working away at the same goalie camp where he played in his younger days. Bunz sounds as though he didn't expect it to be work, but I'm sure he is his same cheerful self just the same.
The NHL playoffs are winding down, it's conference finals time folks. Will Tampa Bay and Roli the goalie, Dwayne Rollison have what it takes to get past Tim Thomas and the Boston Bruins? Will the San Jose Sharks make it past the Vancouver Canucks? Finally we are into the manageable hockey schedule, just as lawns need work and you want to get outside for a cold beverage once in a while.
In very sad NHL news, it was reported Friday night, that earlier in the day New York Rangers' forward Derek Boogaard was found dead alone in his Minneapolis apartment, foul play was not suspected and investigation is under way. Boogaard would have turned 29 next month. Although Boogaard was a pest on the ice, and fans of teams he played against were not his biggest fans, Boogaard was a caring, giving man and was beloved by Wild, Rangers and his junior teams.
Operation Make The Damned Playoffs Already - Copper & Blue Massey
DO YOU SEE WHAT I SEE EDITION XIII - Oilers Nation Gregor
BUNZ THINKS NUGENT-HOPKINS IS LEGIT - Oilers Nation Gregor
FTHM VII: RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS - Oilers Nation Brownlee
FTHM PART VI: ADAM LARSSON - Oilers Nation Brownlee