Sunday, January 19, 2014

Congrats, Henrik Ødegaard: Norwegian Olympic Hero

Missouri Mavericks defensemen Henrik Ødegaard is headed to Sochi to play for his native Norway's Olympic hockey team.  He last played for Team Norway in the 2013 IIHF World Championships where they went 3-4, missing the medal round.

Here he is with the Mavs beating the hell out of some dude:

Read Vahe Gregorian's article on Ødegaard, and his response to the outpouring of fan support he has received in just a few months here in town.  He is the only Olympian with any ties to the Kansas City area, even in his short stay here.  What that says about winter sports in Kansas City is probably notable, but not surprising.

(ed. note: Puckchaser reminds us that former Blades coach Vasily Tikhonov's son, Viktor, is playing for Team Russia).

On the flip side, it's wild to think that Norway values hockey less than, like, cross-country skiing.  I suppose it's a lot like how Americans look at bobsledders.  Name three bobsledders.  YOU CAN'T.  Therefore, let me personally invite every player from Team Norway to sign a contract with the Mavericks so they can be properly appreciated.  I mean, everyone playing for the Mavericks is great, but Mats Trygg and Anders Bastiansen is so much more fun to say.  Oh, and Mats Zuccarello should play for the Mavericks too.

Norway is in Group B with Canada, Finland, and Austria.  Norway is currently ranked ninth in the IIHF rankings, facing the fifth, second, and fifteenth ranked teams, respectively.  Here is their schedule:

All games will be broadcast here in the states.
vs Canada on USA Network
vs Finland on MSNBC
vs Austria vs USA Network

And if you don't think Norway has a chance to medal in Sochi, just remember:
Here is a video from the Mavericks's YouTube page with Henrik and Mavs head coach Scott Hillman discussing the Olympic nod.
TURN UP!!!!!  #slå #opp

1 comment:

  1. You forgot someone with ties to KC.