Sunday, July 01, 2012

Canada Day Cup 2012

Hockey fans across the entire continent are sure blessed to have the sport we love to unite us across the border. After 10 years of covering hockey, I've come upon meeting many people around the world. So, therefore, I celebrate in a special way July 1st in support of them. It was 10 years ago today, in this annual tradition, that I take the time in my activities to simulate a hockey tournament on my Playstation 3 system. So, let me break down the history of this "prestigious" championship.

The first year I chose a format with an East-West 1 game elimination where each Canadian team started the first round against their provincial rivals. As it was my hobby, I would make sure I would be using the most up-to-date rosters.

But as the years went on, EA Sports continued to grow their hockey game franchise and adopted a more true to life scenario whereas they allow users to make their own tournament pools and schedule preliminary games to seed them. To make the tournament even, I had to include the two Canadian franchises that moved to the states, but with thanks to EA Sports, used Colorado and Phoenix in their retro Nordiques and Jets jerseys. But now that the NHL 12 includes the new Winnipeg Jets (formerly known as the Atlanta Thrashers) it left me up to an interesting conundrum.

2012 Results:

So, do I use the Phoenix franchise in the tournament knowing that they have the original Jets in their lineage or do I use the team called the Winnepeg Jets. After careful thought, I decided that the new Jets were going to make their debut into this tournament simulation.

Both Eastern and Western conference pools were simulated with preliminary rounds and got to the featured 8 teams in the brackets. With it being a single KO tournament, the final game came down to another Battle of Alberta as the Edmonton Oilers faced their rivals Calgary Flames.

The first period was pretty tight. There weren't any goals until Edmonton lit the lamp twice. There was actually more physicality than goals. That's what playing in a rivalry game is like. I want to believe that a real life tournament game would look just like this. With 3 mintues left in the game, the Flames did manage to get one past Khabibulin to cut the lead in half. But Edmonton killed off the clock and got awarded the COHF Canada Day Cup (see pictured). The Oilers Taylor Hall was the MVP of the tournament coming up with 9 total tournament points.

Previous Canada Day Champions
2002: Toronto Maple Leafs
2003: Edmonton Oilers
2004: Quebec Nordiques
2005: Montreal Canadians
2006: Montreal Canadians
2007: Winnipeg Jets
2008: Calgary Flames
2009: Vancouver Canucks
2010: Toronto Maple Leafs
2011: Quebec Nordiques

Thank you for reading this part of the blog. I'm going back to read up on the free agency news.
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