While Alex Ovechkin sat back and watched on TV, if he watched at all, with his Russian team long gone from any Olympic action, the superstar’s main counterpart as hockey’s greatest player, Sidney Crosby, scored in overtime to give Canada the gold medal over a tough Brian Burke-built American squad that just wouldn’t surrender.
And in the process, Sidney Crosby has another chapter written of his still-young but already legendary career.
It is Canada’s night, Crosby’s night, Steve Yzerman’s night, and of course every player’s night. It is a night to celebrate hockey in the Great White North. We have the big prize. The players kissed their gold, but it’s our medal too. Because we’re Canadian, and we love our hockey and we love our players and we love the maple leaf on the jersey.
Such a game, such a moment, such a look of heartbreak and sadness on the faces of the Americans. They battled as formidable foes, this team in blue. They had come from behind and tied it at two with just 35 seconds left in the third period, but in the end, Team Canada with Crosby firing it home, have big, beautiful gold medals wrapped around their necks and they waved the flag and sang the anthem, and a nation cheered loud and strong.
Yes, it was again a little too close for comfort, as was the Slovakian game a few days ago. Never let it be said that it was an easy path to gold for the Canadians. The Americans were great. Slovakia poured it on late and Canada dodged a bullet. The Swiss gave the Canadians fits.
But Canada is a never-say-die team, always has been and probably always will. It’s Crosby now, somebody else next time. Canada is a nation of hockey heroes and heroics. For some inexplicable reason, Canadian hockey players possess a magical will to win.
Talk about going out with a bang in these 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.