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National Rivalries @ Vancouver 2010


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well quantity over quality is a very american trait. have you ever been to wal mart?

NZ’s performance at the winter olympics to date is a real disgrace. It really is quite sad. :(

Wouldn't be so down on them Stevie...you gets what you pay for, and what you have as a starting pool of talent. Sad to say NZOC have failed to maximize either.

What all NOC's like NZ (as shown by Australia) need to do when trying to crack the traditional powerhouses of Winter Sports is pick one or maybe two sports and pump in the dosh and talent cultivation there. Korea does this with short (and now long) track speed skating, Australia in freestyle skiing, Britain in skeleton, China in speed skating and aerials etc etc.

Considering NZ's traditions in short track speed skating and alpine skiing, perhaps that's where the NZOC need to target the Kiwi winter Olympic program.

Edited by eusebius65
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Wouldn't be so down on them Stevie...you gets what you pay for, and what you have as a starting pool of talent. Sad to say NZOC have failed to maximize either.

What all NOC's like NZ (as shown by Australia) need to do when trying to crack the traditional powerhouses of Winter Sports is pick one or maybe two sports and pump in the dosh and talent cultivation there. Korea does this with short (and now long) track speed skating, Australia in freestyle skiing, Britain in skeleton, China in speed skating and aerials etc etc.

Considering NZ's traditions in short track speed skating and alpine skiing, perhaps that's where the NZOC need to target the Kiwi winter Olympic program.

I'm not getting down on kiwi athletes, I am so proud of our team. The fact that they put everything they have into their sport, cobble together what little funding they can, sleep on floors, borrow used equipment etc just to compete is really something inspirational. I’m upset with SPARC (NZ’s government sports funding agency) for not being consistent on funding allocations between the summer and winter games according to performance.

Honestly, EVERYBODY in NZ skis/snowboards recreationally, curling is extremely popular in the South Island and Sliding sports? Come on! We are kiwis, we live for adrenaline sports! NZ consistently punches above its weight at the summer games but we treat our winter athlete with a complete lack of professionalism. We need a high performance development program, greater equity in funding for Olympics sport across the winter and summer games.

The northern hemisphere is utilizing our alpine environment more than we are…we have to step up!

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Sliding sports? Come on! We are kiwis, we live for adrenaline sports!

Sigh! My old hobby horse. Wouldn't it be viable to have a professional sliding run in the Thrills Capital of NZ, Queenstown, Games or no Games?

Just wondering Stevie. Do any of the schools in the alpine districts, or even close to the snow like Dunedin or Christchurch, offer winter sports in their sports curriculums?

I actually seriously think NZ should have a honest go at nabbing the Youth Winter Games. The regular Winter games are realistically just a pipe dream at present, but who knows what a successful WYOGs could spark? And the old seasonable problem may not be such a negating issue for those.

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The best way for New Zealand to improve rapidly would be to focus on the newer sports (moguls, aerials, ski cross, snowboard cross, half pipe). Most of these events are ignored by europeans so it's easier to get to the top. That's why Canada and the United States have had such a surge in medals won between 1998 and now.

Build a ski cross course in Cardrona. Hand pick the best alpine skiers in the country. Make them train on the course intensively and you'll get a potential medalist in 2-3 years.

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Just wondering Stevie. Do any of the schools in the alpine districts, or even close to the snow like Dunedin or Christchurch, offer winter sports in their sports curriculums?

Yea they do and not just in the alpine district. My high school did and I grew up in hamilton. An indrustrial agricultural city and not a mountain in sight!

I actually seriously think NZ should have a honest go at nabbing the Youth Winter Games. The regular Winter games are realistically just a pipe dream at present, but who knows what a successful WYOGs could spark? And the old seasonable problem may not be such a negating issue for those.

Yes a good idea indeed. Plus we have the NZ International Winter Games in Queenstown to look forward to biannually and got crazy amounts of media coverage last year.

Build a ski cross course in Cardrona.

Cardrona is more suited to nordic skiing. Treble Cone in Wanaka is where most of the northern hemisphere powerhouses are based during their summer/our winter season.

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Just wondering. I know of the Swiss-Austrian rivalry, but is there much rivalry between the Austrians + Germans?

And what about the Austrians versus the Italians (with all their Tyroleans)? I'm always surprised how many German names are in the Italian team - and I had to laugh yesterday when they were showing one Italian athlete after he'd competed and was waiting for results (can't remember which event), and he was speaking to the broadcast, and to his family, in German!

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Just wondering. I know of the Swiss-Austrian rivalry, but is there much rivalry between the Austrians + Germans?

And what about the Austrians versus the Italians (with all their Tyroleans)? I'm always surprised how many German names are in the Italian team - and I had to laugh yesterday when they were showing one Italian athlete after he'd competed and was waiting for results (can't remember which event), and he was speaking to the broadcast, and to his family, in German!

shush - don't mention South Tyrol (e.g. Zöggeler doesn't sound Italian either)...

well - I would say that Germans don't have a problem with Austrians, but Austrians with Germans...

That is a little bit comparable with the rivalry between the USA and Canada...

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U.S. getting 'hate' on for Canada

American hockey players not shy about letting feelings out ahead of showdown with border rivals

February 21, 2010

Paul Hunter

Torstar News Service

http://www.thespec.com/News/article/725664

VANCOUVER– It's red and white vs. red, white and blue, but Sunday's primary colours could be black and blue.

This will not be just another friendly cross-border hockey tilt between Canada and the U.S.

"I hate them," said Ryan Kesler, a Canuck in the NHL but very much an American here. "It's a big rivalry. Obviously, Canadians, it's their game. I wouldn't say I hate them, you have respect for the other team. Canadians expect to win the gold and anything less is not good enough. It's going to be fun to try to knock them off."

"Do we dislike them? Absolutely," said U.S defenceman Jack Johnson.

While the Americans were tossing out bulletin board material, the Canadian mostly took the high road on the eve of the game, focusing instead on the importance of a victory in order to win their pool.

"What are you getting at," defenceman Chris Pronger said, when asked about Johnson's statement. "Stirring the pot again? Next question.

"I'm not into the `he said, she said' thing."

Then when asked to describe the rivalry, Pronger responded: "There is a rivalry? How would you like me to describe it? I don't think the two teams have played in a while. We're going to find out real quickly tomorrow."

"(What Kesler said) is pretty strong," said Canada's Jonathan Toews. "I think as a team, we feel we hate to lose to anybody in this tournament especially against the Americans. It's a rivalry for a reason. Both teams will be elevating their level of play in consideration of who they're playing against. It'll be a battle."

Sunday's rivalry, despite what Pronger says, will not only be a heated one renewed but it will also be a showdown for top spot in Group A of this Olympic hockey tournament, the winner guaranteed a direct trip the quarter-finals and one of the top seeds when the elimination games start.

And the Americans, who have last change, have spread out their size in order fulfill their game plan of crashing and banging. Remember the Canadians have 15 players who are 6-foot-2 or more. But the Americans counter with big boys David Backes, Bobby Ryan, Ryan Malone and Kesler up front.

"We've got some size too," said U.S. GM Brian Burke. "We've just got to try and get some line match-ups the way we want them. We purposely brought some beef for that reasons.

Added Kesler: "We're going to try and hit them and frustrate them. That's the game plan."

Corey Perry, a pretty good banger himself, said physical play is exactly what his Canadian squad expects in an NHL-style game.

"They're going to be a forechecking team. They'll come with a lot of pressure," he said. "They're a physical team. We just have to be ready to handle their forecheck."

Both teams juggled their lines slightly for Sunday's game. The big change for Canada sees Mike Richards move up to the left side of the No. 1 line with Sidney Crosby. Rick Nash stays on the right side after starting the tournament on the Crosby's left. Jarome Iginla will play on a fourth line again with Jonathan Toews and Brenden Morrow

An interesting new line for the Americans sees a combination of Ryan, Kesler and Patrick Kane, a unit with brawn and scoring touch.

There are no shortage of subplots here since there are 18 players on the Canadian squad have teammates on the American team. Jamie Langenbrunner and Zach Parise, for example, will be shooting on Jersey mate Martin Brodeur. Kane and Toews will be going against each other. San Jose's Joe Pavelski will face four fellow San Jose players on the Canadian team.

"We're not golfing against each other. We're competing against each other," said Langenbrunner when asked it presented a problem.

Although the Americans are technically the home team, Burke has no illusions about this being a hospitable environment.

"We're the enemy tomorrow. We know that," he said. "It's going to be a hostile crazy crowd on behalf of Canada and that's the way it ought to be. The games are in Canada, that's the way it ought to be. It'll be a passionate – it'll be a zoo in here."

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