It might not be the quarterfinals we expected to see, but it's the quarterfinals we deserve.
I mean... Slovenia? Latvia? I love it. A teeny, tiny part of me feels sorry for the Austrians and the Swiss for falling victim to the upsets from the eastern European nations, but it's so much fun when hockey happens, right?
Except to the United States. That stuff won't fly tomorrow when the Czech Republic drags its weary bones back to the arena for the nightcap.
Still, if Slovenia wants to go ahead and continue its miracle little run by eliminating the top-seeded Swedes or, especially, if the Latvians want to continue to honor the memory of Karlis Skrastins by blasting through the Canadians, I will dance in the streets of Arizona. After all, someone has to be this year's Belarus, and the Czech Republic is far too talented to fill that role.
A girl can dream, right?
Here's the full schedule for tomorrow's win-or-go-home games.
|United States||v||Czech Republic||11:00 A.M.||USA|
The four teams that make it through are guaranteed at least two more games and will play for either bronze or gold. All three Dallas Stars players in the tournament remain alive, but either Valeri Nichushkin and the Russians or Kari Lehtonen and the Finns are headed home after tomorrow's game.
So wake up early to put on your navy blue and lime green best, then settle in as the big boys return to the Olympic hockey stage. There's bound to be some great games and tons of heartburn. Because as today's games showed, anything really can happen in a winner-take-all contest.
Remember, keep your seatbelt buckled, your belongings secured and your arms and legs inside the car at all times. It's about to get scary.