Scoggins: For U.S.-Canada hockey, time heals no wounds

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 21, 2014 - 10:36 AM

The Wild’s Zach Parise enters the Sochi semifinal still moved by the 2010 final involving border rivals.

Zach Parise never found the time or inspiration, or maybe even the need, to watch the 2010 Olympic gold medal game. He still carried those memories in his mind and soul.

But there it was, suddenly on his TV screen, and the emotions rushed back like a cresting wave. Lounging at home one day in January as he recovered from a foot injury that forced him to miss 14 games for the Wild, Parise started channel surfing until he came across a replay of the U.S.-Canada championship classic in Vancouver.

He swears that, in the four years since, he’d never even seen parts of that game. He started watching it in the second period that day. His goose bumps arrived shortly thereafter.

“I had some flashbacks,” he said.

Parise remembered the euphoria he felt after scoring a game-tying goal with just 24.4 seconds left in regulation. He recalled the surge of excitement inside Team USA’s locker room during intermission before overtime, the belief that they had a chance to win gold on Canada’s turf.

And, of course, he relived the heartbreak that came when Sidney Crosby became a certified national treasure with his overtime goal that delivered a gold medal to Canada.

“It was a special game, a great game to be a part of, a lot of fun,” Parise said. “But at the same time, you can’t think about how fun the game was without thinking of how disappointing the end was. They go together.”

And now for the encore, though a gold medal isn’t at stake in Friday’s rematch, only the opportunity to play for it. The fact that Team USA and Canada meet in the semifinals of the Olympic tournament this time hardly dampens the anticipation.

These two teams could play a pickup game in Moose Jaw in July and it’d feel like compelling theater.

“It’s such a great rivalry, whether the teams play each other in the gold medal game or the preliminary round,” Parise said.

“The two teams bring out the best in each other. It makes for a great game on television back home for the fans. From a player’s standpoint, there’s always something special when it’s U.S.-Canada game.”

Both teams arrived in Sochi as gold medal contenders, their rosters stocked with NHL stars. If the U.S.-Russia game earlier in the tournament provided proof for why the NHL should continue to participate in the Olympics, the level of high-end skill that Team USA and Canada will roll out on the ice should put an exclamation point on that argument.

This should be as good as hockey gets in terms of talent, passion and intensity.

“It’s two teams that love beating each other,” Parise said.

David Backes learned that truism at an early age. The Spring Lake Park product gained an appreciation for the rivalry when his youth teams traveled to tournaments in Canada.

“Being from Minnesota, we had the same sort of winters where you’re out on the frozen pond or outdoor rink, having fun with your buddies,” he said. “A group of kids just north of the border are doing the same thing.”

Those boys are men now. They’ve all reached the pinnacle of their profession and become wealthy in the process. A few of them are even NHL teammates. The foundation for that rivalry remains unchanged, though. It’s just two teams that love to beat each other.

“We’re going to lay everything that we have into that game,” Backes said.

Backes played a supporting role on the U.S. team in 2010. Now, he’s a leader. The powerful swings of emotion in that championship game four years ago remain “vivid” to this day.

“There’s scorn and there’s a little spite afterward,” he said. “In retrospect months later, you put it in perspective and say, ‘Hey, I got a silver medal and we were part of an amazing team that played in one of the best hockey games ever played.’ ”

That game will be tough to duplicate. They’re not playing for gold this time. But it’s U.S.-Canada in the Olympic tournament. That alone makes it a special occasion.

 

Chip Scoggins chip.scoggins@startribune.com

  • related content

  • Video: Men's hockey preview: USA vs. Canada

    Thursday February 20, 2014

    In a rematch of the 2010 Gold Medal Game, Team USA & Team Canada meet in the Olympic semifinals...

  • Replay: USA-Canada men's hockey Live Blog

    Wednesday February 19, 2014

    Relive the USA-Canada men's hockey semifinal through tweets from the Star Tribune's Chip Scoggins and others watching in Minnesota and elsewhere.

  • Second to one: Canada beats U.S. again for women's gold

    Friday February 21, 2014

    Canada trailed 2-0 before tying it up in the final 3:26 of regulation, and then winning with a power play goal at 8:10 of overtime.

  • Michael Russo breaks down U.S.-Canada semifinal

    Friday February 21, 2014

    men’s hockey SEMIFINAL previewStar Tribune hockey writer Michael Russo’s thoughts heading into Friday’s U.S.-Canada semifinal:A mere hour after helping lift...

  • Chart: U.S.-Canada men's hockey rivalry renewed

    Thursday February 20, 2014

    Rivalry renewedu.s. vs. canada11 a.m. today • NBCSNThe historyTeam USA has won two gold medals (1960, 1980). Canada has won...

  • FILE -- U.S. mens hockey forward Zach Parise (9), center, about to score with 24 seconds left in regulation against Canada's goalie Roberto Luongo (1) to tie their gold medal game, which Canada went on to win in overtime, during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, Feb. 28, 2010. The American men, who face Canada in a semifinal match Friday, Feb. 21 at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, have waited four years for a chance to unseat their North American rival. (Chang W. Lee/The New York Times)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Cleveland 4 Suspended
Kansas City 2
Baltimore - W. Chen 6:05 PM
NY Yankees - M. Pineda
Kansas City - D. Duffy 6:05 PM
Cleveland - C. Carrasco
Seattle - J. Paxton 6:07 PM
Toronto - J. Happ
Chicago WSox - C. Bassitt 6:08 PM
Detroit - K. Lobstein
Pittsburgh - F. Liriano 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Harang
Houston - N. Tropeano 7:05 PM
Texas - D. Holland
St. Louis - A. Wainwright 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - T. Wood
Arizona - J. Collmenter 7:10 PM
Minnesota - R. Nolasco
LA Angels - C. Wilson 9:05 PM
Oakland - J. Samardzija
San Francisco - J. Peavy 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - D. Haren
Colorado - T. Matzek 9:10 PM
San Diego - E. Stults
San Diego 22 FINAL
Buffalo 10
Dallas 34 FINAL
St. Louis 31
Washington 34 FINAL
Philadelphia 37
Houston 17 FINAL
NY Giants 30
Minnesota 9 FINAL
New Orleans 20
Tennessee 7 FINAL
Cincinnati 33
Baltimore 23 FINAL
Cleveland 21
Green Bay 7 FINAL
Detroit 19
Indianapolis 44 FINAL
Jacksonville 17
Oakland 9 FINAL
New England 16
San Francisco 14 FINAL
Arizona 23
Denver 20 FINAL
Seattle 26
Kansas City 34 FINAL
Miami 15
Pittsburgh 37 FINAL
Carolina 19
Chicago 7:30 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Washington
Ottawa 12:30 PM
NY Islanders
Ottawa 5:00 PM
NY Islanders
New Jersey 6:00 PM
NY Rangers
Detroit 6:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Toronto 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Washington 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Winnipeg
St. Louis 7:30 PM
Dallas
Anaheim 8:00 PM
Colorado
Colorado 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Los Angeles 9:00 PM
Arizona
Arizona 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Old Dominion 45 FINAL
Rice 42
Troy 0 FINAL
(12) Georgia 66
Georgia Tech 27 FINAL
Virginia Tech 24
Eastern Mich 14 FINAL
(9) Michigan State 73
Iowa 24 FINAL
Pittsburgh 20
Bowling Green 17 FINAL
(19) Wisconsin 68
Maryland 34 FINAL
Syracuse 20
Tulane 13 FINAL
Duke 47
Hawaii 12 FINAL
Colorado 21
Marshall 48 FINAL
Akron 17
North Carolina 41 FINAL
(23) East Carolina 70
Army 21 FINAL
Wake Forest 24
Virginia 33 FINAL
(20) BYU 41
(6) Texas A&M 58 FINAL
SMU 6
Rutgers 31 FINAL
Navy 24
Central Mich 10 FINAL
Kansas 24
Utah 26 FINAL
Michigan 10
Florida 21 FINAL
(3) Alabama 42
Louisville 34 FINAL
FIU 3
Fla Atlantic 19 FINAL
Wyoming 20
Indiana 31 FINAL
Missouri 27
San Jose St 7 FINAL
Minnesota 24
Texas State 35 FINAL
Illinois 42
Massachusetts 7 FINAL
Penn State 48
Georgia State 14 FINAL
Washington 45
Appalachian St 20 FINAL
Southern Miss 21
(14) Miss State 34 FINAL
(17) LSU 29
Northern Ill 14 FINAL
Arkansas 52
Middle Tennessee 17 FINAL
Memphis 36
Utah State 14 FINAL
Arkansas State 21
Miami-Ohio 24 FINAL
Cincinnati 31
Idaho 24 FINAL
Ohio U 36
Ball State 23 FINAL
Toledo 34
(13) So Carolina 48 FINAL
Vanderbilt 34
(4) Oklahoma 45 FINAL
West Virginia 33
Ga Southern 28 FINAL
South Alabama 6
UNLV 14 FINAL
Houston 47
Miami-Florida 31 FINAL
(21) Nebraska 41
New Mexico 38 FINAL
New Mexico St 35
Clemson 17 FINAL
(1) Florida State 23
California 45 FINAL
Arizona 49
San Diego St 7 FINAL
Oregon State 28
(2) Oregon 38 FINAL
Washington St 31
Louisiana 9 FINAL
Boise State 34
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(24) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(11) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(25) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(12) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Kentucky
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(9) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Indiana
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Virginia
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Louisville
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
UAB
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
NC State
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
California
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Kansas
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Connecticut
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
Washington
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(22) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(13) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
North Carolina 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Clemson
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
ULM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(17) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Duke 9/27/14 6:30 PM
Miami-Florida
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Utah
(8) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Syracuse
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(21) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(18) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Toronto 40 FINAL
Brt Columbia 23
Edmonton 23 FINAL
Hamilton 25
Calgary 15 FINAL
Montreal 31
Ottawa 32 FINAL
Saskatchewan 35

ADVERTISEMENT

Advertisement
Golden Gavel by Star Tribune

Time left for great deals

Bid thru Sept. 29

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Grade the Vikings offense

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close