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Hockey fans definitely not left wanting this season thanks to Olympics

Aaron Hall | Interrobang | Sports | January 9th, 2006

Remember last year around this time when all hockey fans were deprived of the sport that they had grown to love?

Well that is definitely not the case this year. Hockey enthusiasts are being treated to some of the best hockey that has been witnessed in many years.

The National Hockey League (NHL) is back from a year's hiatus, and arguably is more entertaining than ever before. In 2006 we will also see the Olympic winter games, which will showcase the greatest players from around the world, and currently the kids are displaying their hockey talent in the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior hockey tournament.

The NHL is seeing an increase in scoring this season due to numerous rule changes, and subsequently is pleasing fans with a more entertaining style of hockey.

Superstar players such as Jaromir Jagr, Dany Heatley, Joe Thornton, and Mike Modano, to name a few are now all given more space to display their skills and subsequently are putting more points on the board.

The race for the Calder Trophy for the NHL's rookie of the year is also providing fans with excitement as the top two rookies in the league, Washington Capital's forward Alexander Ovechkin and Pittsburgh Penguins forward Sidney Crosby, continue to fill the back of the net on a nightly basis.

NHL fans will once again be without professional hockey this February, but instead of watching monotonous and mind-numbing material on labour disputes and salary cap disagreements, fans will be treated to international hockey in its finest form.

Each competing country in the 2006 Turin, Italy Olympic Games will showcase many NHL superstars, and Team Canada will be the odds on favourite to repeat as Olympic gold medalists.

Despite pressure from the media to select younger players to the squad, Team Canada decided to go with experience and the majority of the selected players were a part of the 2004 World Cup team, or the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic Team.

With the immense talent that Canada possesses, it is very difficult to argue with their decision.

It is a shame that Canada could not send two teams to the Olympic Games because Canada #1 would undoubtedly meet Canada #2 in the gold medal game.

This year's version of Team Canada at the World Junior hockey tournament were considered underdogs heading into the event.

I don't care who is on the team, or what year it is, Team Canada as an underdog will always been an oxymoron in my books.

Team Canada proved all critics wrong, and were once again a dominant team, going undefeated heading into the gold medal game against Russia held on January 5th.

This overabundance of quality and entertaining hockey is something that hockey enthusiasts should enjoy immensely. So sit back and enjoy.

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