There was plenty of consternation to go around on Friday when France stunned Canada in the tournament opener, handing them a 3-2 shootout loss. There’s no getting around it: Canada played poorly, Cristobal Huet did not, and anything can happen once a game gets to the shootout.
You’re not supposed to lose to France. You’re supposed to attack them quickly, occupy their defensive zone, and wait for them to surrender. Yep, jokes about France surrendering. That’s what you get on the weekend.
France looked like a team, while Canada just looked like a collection of players, with many quick to point fingers at the team’s leadership, headed by newly-minted captain Kevin Bieksa. It’s not entirely fair — with 12 players under 25, some early nerves were inevitable — but Bieksa, along with fellow Canucks Jason Garrison and Alex Burrows, are among the few veterans on the team and will bear the brunt of responsibility for any failures.
It also means they’ll take a lot of responsibility for any victories, and all three played a major role in Canada’s bounceback victory over Slovakia.Continue Reading —›