Archive for February, 2010

2010 Winter Olympics: Ritter’s Rant—Canada Needs To Be Better

February 20th, 2010 2 Comments

Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter I have tried to watch all of Canada’s athletes participate in their respective events at the 2010 Olympics, I really have. Through it all I have held high hopes for Canada and it’s athletes, yet on far too many occasions I have been left disappointed, embarrassed and frustrated with the lack of results. To be fair, thus far, there has been plenty to cheer about—Alexandre Bilodeau’s gold medal effort in the Men’s Moguls, Kristina Groves’ gutsy Bronze medal performance Ladies 3000m speed skating, Maelle Ricker’s gold medal in Ladies snowboarding and Marianne St. Gerais’ exciting silver medal in the Ladies 500 m on the short track, all stick out as exemplary performance—performances both the athletes and Canada can be proud of. Despite Canada’s success in many events there has been a multitude of

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2010 Winter Olympics: Should The Shootout Be Abolished?

February 19th, 2010 No Comments

Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter Every four years hockey fans from coast-to-coast tune into the Olympics to watch what many experts term as the greatest hockey ever played. This year, Russia has assembled arguably the best set of top six forwards in the history of the game. Alex Ovechkin, Ilya Kovalchuk, Pavol Datsyuk, Evgeni Malkin, Alexander Semin and Maxim Afinogenov are six of the games most intimidating snipers on the planet, the fact they have been assembled on one team is just incredible. Comparatively, Team Canada is made up of one of the most impressive group of players we have ever witnessed. Sidney Crosby, Chris Pronger, Scott Niedermayer, Martin Brodeur, Ryan Getzlaf, Drew Doughty, Roberto Luongo and Joe Thornton‑ to name a few, help make up a virtual all-star caliber roster for Canada, one that, despite it’s struggle

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2010 Winter Olympics: Canada vs. Switzerland, Highlights & Analysis

February 19th, 2010 2 Comments

Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter Coming into tonight’s game against Switzerland, there was plenty of mention of the 2006 Winter Olympics—the year Switzerland beat Canada by a score of 2-0. For Switzerland, their victory was akin to the American’s Miracle On Ice of 1980—nobody thought the Swiss would beat the mighty Canadians, comparatively, for Canada, the loss was a wake up call and cause for embarrassment. Canada’s loss in 2006 stung not only the players, it penetrated an entire nation. Canada is widely regarded as hockey’s cream of the crop and a loss to Switzerland was both unacceptable and alarming. Canada’s roster has changed significantly since the 2006 Olympics. Of those that were on Canada’s roster in 2006, only eight players are returning—Martin Brodeur, Roberto Luongo, Chris Pronger, Scott Niedermayer, Dany Heatley, Jarome Iginla, Rick Nash, Eric Staal

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Bad Trades: Who made the biggest blunder in NHL history???

February 18th, 2010 4 Comments

With the NHL trade deadline coming up, my thoughts quickly turned to the worst trades in NHL history. The list is longer than you think, but for the purpose of fitting this article into this publication, I have created a list of 12 horrific trades. 1. Pavol Demitra gets traded from the Ottawa Senators to the St. Louis Blues for Christer Olsson. Well, we all know who Demitra is, who the heck is Olsson? Demitra has over 700 points in his NHL career, while Olsson played 25 games for the Sens, scoring two goals and adding three assists for a total of five points. OUCH! Pass the vaseline, that trade hurt! 2. The Los Angeles Kings Trade Wayne Gretzky to the St. Louis Blues for Craig Johnson, Roman Vopat, Patrice Tardif, a first and a fifth rounder. In case you

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Brian Burke Is Right: NHL Teams Should Be Allowed To Trade Salary

February 18th, 2010 No Comments

Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Brian Burke is often looked upon as a bully in NHL circles. His crass demeanor and aggressive nature with the media makes Burke one of the most feared general managers in NHL hockey. Let’s face it, nobody is under the impression that the “P” in the middle of Brian Burke’s name stands for Penelope, however, you may find more than a few people in NHL circles that are willing to bet it is a five letter word that rhymes with “slick”. To be fair, Burke’s gruff nature is up for debate—I for one love his demeanor and swagger. One thing is definite, Burke is an innovator, the type of GM that looks outside the box for answers, the type of GM that is always willing to take calculated risks, and a guy that is always

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Ten Venues The NHL Needs To Consider For The NHL’s Winter Classic:

February 18th, 2010 2 Comments

Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter Thus far, we have witnessed some of the most beloved franchises in NHL history play at some very impressive venues. Last years tilt between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Detroit Red Wings held at historic Wrigley Field in Chicago was probably my favorite event as it showcased the up and coming Blackhawks versus the veteran laden Red Wings, two of the NHL’s most entertaining franchises. I think when we talk about the Winter Classic it is important for the NHL to consider the teams that will be involved. A teams style of play comes into consideration as well, nobody wants to watch two defensive teams battle it out when it’s minus ten outside and nobody is interested in witnessing two bottom feeding teams play for 60 minutes either. With that in mind, when

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