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#1 am 19.02.2020 um 04:53 Uhr Diesen Beitrag zitieren
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TORONTO -- The fastest show on ice is the biggest attraction at the World Cup of Hockey.Team North America is made up of the best 23-and-under American and Canadian players, a combination of speed and skill that captivates even the most old-school of hockey people. Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said North America has captured peoples imaginations before the real games even started.No one is more spectacular than Connor McDavid, the 19-year-old generational talent who could soon be the face of the NHL. The World Cup is an introduction to many of the games best young stars but especially McDavid, who could slip into anonymity in Edmonton but will be front and center at this tournament for fans in the U.S. and around the world.In a short period of time, because its a worldwide stage, theyre going to see Connor and what he can do, said Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli, who helped build Team North America. Hell be with his peers, so itll be even more fun to watch. World-class talent. Hes getting better every day. Im excited to see it at this level, too.Team North America is the buzz of the World Cup after making opponents look like they were skating in mud during exhibition play. It features five of the past six No. 1 picks: Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs (2016), McDavid of the Oilers (2015), Aaron Ekblad of the Florida Panthers (2014), Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche (2013) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins of the Oilers (2012).Add in 2015 No. 2 pick Jack Eichel of the Buffalo Sabres and Calgary Flames star Johnny Gaudreau and North America is not a team to overlook. Team Europe coach Ralph Krueger called North America the fastest team in the tournament, and dont expect anyone to offer an argument.That was an amazing sight to see these kids in action together, Krueger said after losing two exhibition games to those kids. What an unbelievable future the National Hockey League has with these players has with these players around the league.The future could be downright absurd. Sidney Crosby is the best hockey player on the planet in the present, but its not a stretch to think McDavid is next to claim that honor in the very near future.A finalist for the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year despite missing three months with injury, McDavid was a point-a-game player as a teenager. All the hype around him may not even be enough, and by the day more hockey people are gaining an appreciation of what McDavid can do.You hear a lot about him from the outside, and its fun to watch him play, said Chicago Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman, whos a part of North Americas management staff. Incredibly talented player, exciting to watch. I think the skys the limit as far as what he can do. ... Hes going to be a great player in this game for a long time.McDavid is already a great player, and North America coach Todd McLellan is spicing up his teams opener Sunday against Finland by putting him on a line with Matthews. Even though Matthews is only eight months younger, he understands playing with McDavid is a rare opportunity.He thinks the game extremely fast. He makes quick, fast decisions, Matthews said. Hes a special player. He can do a lot of things at a pace that not many people can do.McDavid said North America doesnt have a shortage of speed and likely wont struggle to score goals. He acknowledged the job will be to defend well and keep the puck out of the net against more experienced competition.But North America was designed to showcase the most exciting elements of hockey.Their speed stands out, theyre confident, Crosby said. To be at their age and have the success that they do, you dont have that without confidence and obviously skill. They have a good combination of that. I think they respect their opponent, but not too much, so you have to be ready for them.Opponents are ready and so is McDavid, North Americas captain at 19 who led Canada to world junior gold at Air Canada Centre 20 months ago. Back in the same building, the spotlight is on McDavid, who shines when the competition level rises.Anytime the worlds best play against the worlds best, it always brings out the best hockey, McDavid said. Its a good opportunity for our whole team and myself personally to make a real name for ourselves and put a real statement on what the future may hold for all of us and myself. We definitely have a good opportunity ahead of us.---Follow Stephen Whyno on Twitter at . Aaron Rodgers Super Bowl Jersey . Traditional contenders Brazil, Greece and Turkey drew the other three spots to complete the 24-team field for this summers tournament in Spain, basketball governing body FIBA announced Saturday at its meeting in Barcelona. Jace Sternberger Super Bowl Jersey . After taking two big hits this week -- losing at home and dropping back-to-back games for the first time all season -- Indiana struck back by playing its most complete game of the year. . Cuban testified Thursday that he was upset when the companys CEO told him news that would reduce the value of his shares, for which hed paid $7.5 million. But he said he did nothing improper when he sold those shares over the next two days. Preston Smith Super Bowl Jersey . LOUIS -- Cardinals cleanup hitter Allen Craig says hes recovered from a foot injury and ready to be put on St. Jaire Alexander Super Bowl Jersey . The Lightning are 2-0 so far on a four-game road trip, giving the club five straight wins as the guest and improving Tampas away record this season to 11-8-2. CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. warned Monday that his return to NASCAR could take longer than planned.NASCARs most popular driver is scheduled to miss his third consecutive race this Sunday with concussion-like symptoms. On his weekly podcast, he said he will have another evaluation soon to see what kind of gains weve made and get in front of my doctors . and let them tell me where they think Im at and that will help us make the decision on what were going to do for Watkins Glen.Jeff Gordon came out of retirement to drive for Earnhardt on Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Gordon will race the No. 88 car again this weekend at Pocono. No decision has been made by Hendrick Motorsports about next months race at Watkins Glen.Earnhardt said on last weeks podcast he was struggling with balance and nausea, and said Monday doctors have given him daily exercises to improve his balance.That stuff takes about two hours, two and a half hours, he said. Ive got to do it every day. Theres worse things to have to do. Some of it iss tedious.dddddddddddd Some of it is pretty tough. Some of the visual stuff is pretty tough.You can race with some ailments. You can race with a bad wrist ... theres been some guys that have done some pretty incredible things. Ive raced with a broken shoulder blade. Theres certain things you can race through, but one of the things you cannot race through is concussion-like symptoms. The balance deal is a critical part of being able to drive a race car.Earnhardt also asked his fans to thank Gordon for taking over. Gordon was on vacation in France with his family when team owner Rick Hendrick asked him to drive for Earnhardt.Im not sure I would have made the decision he made to leave an awesome vacation with his family, he said. Make sure you guys send special thanks to Jeff, my crew went through all that heat (at Indy) as well. Keep sending them good vibes. When we get back together, its going to be on. ' ' '
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