On Saturday night the gold-medal game of the 2019 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship was played, minus the host Canadian side.
There are plenty of reasons you can point to that may have contributed to Canada’s defeat, but one of the biggest that many have singled out was the broken stick defenceman Noah Dobson suffered right as he was about to fire into a wide-open net for what would’ve been a dramatic Canadian overtime victory.
It’s unclear what may have caused the twig to snap in half the way it did: A freak accident causing the deterioration of the stick itself, just plain bad luck or maybe even some divine intervention striking down against the Canadian side?
For Don Cherry’s money, it’s definitely the last of those three options.
Following up on his Coach’s Corner segment during last week’s Hockey Night in Canada, Cherry said it was the will of the great and mystic keepers of hockey who caused Dobson’s stick to turn into glorified kindling.
“When a stick breaks like that – it breaks halfway up, you know that’s the winner there and it breaks halfway up – look where it breaks. It usually breaks about three-quarters down.” Cherry said during this week’s Coach’s Corner. “That should’ve been in the net and you know we’re gonna lose like that and all I’ve got to say is you don’t beat teams 14-0.
“You don’t beat them down like that or you pay the price. I’ve said it before, the hockey gods will get you or karma will get you.”
Last week, Cherry discussed how perturbed he was by Canada’s 14-0 shellacking of Denmark during the group stage of the tournament and warned the team that running the score up like that will have dire consequences in the future.
Whether you believe in the mighty pantheon of hockey gods or not, it looks like Cherry’s warning rang true.