Sunday, February 26, 2017

2017 Scotties Tournament of Hearts

this ended up being a heck of a game, but Rachel Homan and her team from Ontario beat Michelle Englot and her team from Manitoba 8-6 in 11 ends. first extra end final since 2010 when Jennifer Jones and her Manitoba team (representing Canada at these Scotties) beat Prince Edward Island 8-7. Homan is the youngest skip to win three Scotties tournaments. Homan, Emma Miskew, Joanne Courtney, Lisa Weagle and alternate Cheryl Kreviazuk will be representing Canada at the Womens World Curling Championships in Beijing, China. the world's run from March 18 - 26.

Friday, February 24, 2017

today in.....

1. today in 1982 Wayne Gretzky scored his 77th goal of the year, breaking Phil Esposito's record of 76 from the 1970-71 NHL season. Esposito was at the game in Buffalo when Gretzky broke it. Gretzky scored his 78th and 79th against the Sabres that night and finished the 1981-82 season with 92 - a record i am sure won't be broken.
2. also on this day in 1952, the Edmonton Mercurys represented Canada at the 1952 Winter Olympics and won gold. they went 7 wins and a tie in the round robin format to win gold. the tie against the U.S. clinched the gold on the last day of the tournament. the U.S. got the silver and Sweden with the bronze. exactly 50 years later, the men's team beat the U.S. 5-2 to claim gold at the Salt Lake winter Olympics, ending the 50 year drought. this was three days after the women's hockey team to win hockey gold. the men's and women's hockey team duplicated it in 2010 and 2014.
3. and in 2010 Clara Hughes wins her last Olympic medal when she picked up a bronze in the 5000m speed skating race. she also won a gold (2006) and a second bronze (2002) in the 5000m and a silver in the team pursuit. she also won two bronzes in cycling in 1996 - in the road race and time trial. she is now a National Spokesperson for mental health and the Bell Lets Talk Mental Health initiative. and my hero and inspiration.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

today in 1980

the U.S. hockey team pulled off the biggest Olympic upset as they beat the Soviet Union 4-3 in Lake Placid, New York. the U.S. were trailing 3-2 after two periods. they then score two goals in two minutes, one from Mark Johnson and the other from Mike Eruzione, to go up 4-3 with 10 minutes left in the third. they survive a late Soviet onslaught, and as the final few seconds tick of, Al Michaels of ABC - in excitement - says "Do you believe in miracles? YES!!!" the game was played at 5pm New York time and was tape delayed to 8pm for prime time viewing. the U.S clinched the gold after beating Finland 4-2 (they were trailing 2-1 after two periods when Herb Brooks got after his players and said "if you lose this game, you'll take it to your graves.) the Soviet Union bear Sweden 9-2 to take silver, while Sweden took bronze. it was a different format then, where top two teams from the two groups went to the final round (with the group result carried into the final round. Sweden tied the U.S. 2-2 while the Soviet Union beat Finland 4-2). so that is that.

Monday, February 20, 2017

on this day in 1998

today in 1998 at the winter Olympics in Nagano, Tara Lipinski became the youngest athlete (i think it still stands) to win a gold medal. she took gold in figure skating at 15 yrs 255 days old. she started skating at age 6. after she went to bed (with her medal) there was a small earthquake. when someone asked her about it the next day, her response was "what earthquake?" she slept through it. that is it for today.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

on this day

on this day in 1918, Georges Vezina recorded the NHL's first ever shut out as the Montreal Canadiens beat the Toronto Arenas 9-0. in a season in which 18 of the 36 games (includes the Montreal Wanderers defaulted two games to the Canadiens and Arenas after their arena burned down. their withdrawal from the league came afterwards) had 10 goals scored total and 5 of those games the winning team scored at least 10. Georges Vezina was nicknamed "the Chicoutimi Cucumber" because the Chicoutimi native was cool in the net. that was the era in which the goalies were not allowed to fall to the ice to stop the puck. they got a penalty if they did. sadly he collapsed after starting the first game of the 1925-26 season against the Pittsburgh Pirates (not the baseball team). he wsa diagnosed with tuberculosis and died in March 1926. the Vezina trophy was named after him, first for the goalie who gave up the fewest goals, then for the top goalie voted by the GM'S.

hockey day in Canada

it's the annual hockey day in Canada. all Canadian teams are playing today 6 of the 7 will be aired on Hockey Night In Canada. Winnipeg vs Montreal already started and is scoreless so far. Edmonton is in Chicago at 5pm (not on HNIC), Ottawa @ Toronto, also at 5pm and Calgary @ Vancouver at 8pm (all times Edmonton time). updates as games become final. UPDATE 1: Winnipeg 3 Montreal 1. UPDATE 2: Edmonton 3 Chicago 1. UPDATE 3: Ottawa 6 Toronto 3. UPDATE 4: Vancouver 2 Calgary 1 (OT). that is it for another hockey day in Canada.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

National Flag of Canada Day

happy birthday to the Canadian flag. the current designed was first made public on this day in 1965. there was much debate and controversy leading up to "the Great Flag Debate." after six months and many speeches, the design was ultimately passed on Dec. 15, 1964 and was approved by the House of Commons (163 to 78). Queeb Elizabeth II proclaimed on January 28, 1965 and inaugurated on Feb. 15. below is the previous red ensign flag and the current flag.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

on this day....

in 1992 at the winter games in Albertville Toni Nieminen of Finland became (at the time) the youngest champion at 16 years and 259 days old when he won gold in the ski jumping large hill team event, then followed it up two days later in the individual event. he became the youngest by ONE DAY over bobsledder Billy Fiske. the individual gold still stands as a record (16 yrs 261 days) for males

Sunday, February 12, 2017

women's ice hockey final Olympic qualification

the last two spots for the 2018 Olympic hockey tournament have been filled. Japan and Switzerland each won their respective groups to qualify. Japan beat Germany early this morning to win Group D and Switzerland beat Czech Rep. to win group C. they join Sweden and South Korea in group B at the Olympics. Canada, U.S., Finland and Russia make up group A.

Thursday, February 09, 2017

one year to go

today marks one year to the opening ceremomies of the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. 6 new sports were added for these games. they are :snowboarding big air (both men and women), curling mixed doubles, speed skating mass start (both men and women) and alpine skiing team event. parallel slalom in snowboarding (both men and women) were dropped to make room for the big air event. today, also unveiled the torch for the torch relay. (shown below). can't wait for the games to begin.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

on this day in...

start with 1984 with the Winter Olympics in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia (now in Bosnia & Herzegovena). Juri Franco won Yugoslavia's first Olympic medal - a silver in the giant slalom. Gaetan Boucher of Canada and Karin Enke of East Germany each won two golds - both in speed skating. Eirik Kvalfoss of Norway won the complete set of medals (gold, silver and bronze) in biathlon and and Phil and Steve Mahre of the U.S. won gold and silver in the slalom. Egypt, Monaco, Puerto Rico, Senegal and the British Virgin Islands were at their first games. these were the last games to go 11 days (expanded to 16 starting in 1988). Canada won 4 medals (2g, 1s, 1b) at these games. in 1992 the winter games were held in Albertville, France. this was the last year the winter and summer games were held in the same year. the 1994 games were the first games held on alternating even numbered years. Kristi Yamaguchi of the U.S. and Midori Ito of Japan became first persons of Asian descent to win a medal in figure skating, winning gold and silver respectively. Ito was the first woman to land a triple axle in Olympic competition. speed skating was held outdoors for the last time here. they have been indoors since. short track speed skating, moguls and women's biathlon were added to these games. curling, ski ballet, aerials and speed skiing were discontinued as demonstration sports. curling was added as a medal event in 1998, while the Aerials were added in 1994. Canada won 7 medals at these games (2g, 3s, 2b). in 2002 the Salt Lake games were held. 78 nations were at these games. Canada won both mens and womens hockey gold - the men ended a 50 year drought when they won. Skeleton was contested at the games for the first time since 1928. China won its first and second Winter Olympic golds. both by Yang Yang (A). Canada won 17 medals (7g, 3s and 7b). below is the logos for these games listed.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

on this day in 1976

Darryl Sittler scored 6 goals and had 4 assists as the Toronto Maple Leafs blew out the Boston Bruins 11-4 on a Saturday night at Maple Leaf Gardens. the previous record was 8 points by Maurice Richard in 1944 (he scored 5g and 3a on December 28). Sittler broke the record 9:27 into the third period with his 5th goal of the night. he later tied an playoff record with 5 goals in a game against Philadephia during the 1976 playoffs.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

what a finish to super bowl 51

this has to be an epic comeback - or an epic choke job, but the New England Patriots are Super Bowl 51 champs winning 34-28 in the FIRST OVERTIME in Super Bowl history. the Patriots were down 28-3 and scored the last 31 points of the game. i am sure this is the biggest deficit the winner came back from. the Patriots 5th super bowl victory. wow. Tom Brady became the first QB to win 5 Super Bowls. he was also named Super Bowl MVP. so no more football until June when CFL training camps begin. cheers