Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Team Canada: Help Needed

Sidney Crosby and Team Canada lost their first tune-up game to Belarus (Belarus?) 4-3. With more teams falling from the playoffs, coach Marc Habscheid is looking for more skilled players to join the ranks.

For an exhibition game against Belarus on Tuesday, the head coach of Canada's team for the upcoming IIHF world hockey championships had a patchwork lineup of nine NHL players plus national team skaters and juniors who won't be on the roster for the tournament in Riga, Latvia.

Belarus won 4-3.

You never want to lose a game but we only had seven NHL skaters," said Habscheid, who went with three lines and five defencemen. "Everything taken into consideration, the guys worked hard but they're goalie was very good for them.

"We outshot them pretty bad and he played really well. We're just gearing up for the start of the tournament."

Calder served as captain.

"A lot of the guys hadn't skated for two weeks and we just got thrown together," said the native of Mannville, Alta. "(Belarus) got two power-play goals in the third.

"We tried to battle back and we got one, but their goalie played awesome for them at the end. We got tons of chances and couldn't bang it in."

Like Habscheid, he's wondering who his new teammates might be.

"You wonder about who's coming and when, but we're not worried about it," said Calder. "We know there are good players coming."

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