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Mark Streit: Live from Moscow

Saturday, 05.05.2007 / 12:00 AM / News
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Mark Streit: Live from Moscow
The Canadiens defenseman's blog from the World Hockey Championship

Mark Streit's blog

Posted by: Mark Streit at 8:33 am MSD on May 10, 2007

I got my first points of the tournament last weekend.  I was happy we qualified for the quarters and it's always nice to get points and to get a goal too.  For our team to be successful, everyone needs to play well defensively.  So I focused on that and a little less on the offense.  And with good defense, sooner or later the offense will fall into place and it paid off last weekend.

Aleksey Morozov

We play Canada today and it's going to be a different game than last year at the Olympics.  They're two different teams.  In a one-game series, anything is possible.  Canada's won all of their games so far and they're the big favorite.  We need all the guys to play an incredible game in order to be successful.

Over the last few games we've been playing with more confidence and we've been using our speed a lot better.  Our team defense has also been better than it was at the beginning.  We're also playing a lot looser.

We had four games in five days so having a few days off before today was good to help us recover a bit.  We usually go out for dinner each night and have the same routine as before each game.

I don't really get nervous for international games.  I actually get excited! I just want to work hard and have fun out there.  My pre-game routine doesn't change from Montreal to here.  I keep the same routine as always so I feel comfortable out there.  I don't want to mix things up.

Mark Streit at the 2002 Olympic Games

Monday we had a complete day off, no practice or anything.  During our practices, which on off-days are usually about 50 minutes, we've done all kinds of different drills: 1-on-1, 2-on-2, 2-on-1, 3-on-2 etc.

The Russian team has really impressed me.  They have four very strong lines, plenty of skill and a lot of speed.  And they work hard as well.  Alexei Morozov has impressed me during this tournament.  He's the points leader and has been really good.

This is the 10th World Championship I've been to and I'm enjoying it even more than when I first started!  It's always fun to play with my old buddies.  I still have the dream of winning a medal at a big international tournament with Switzerland.  It might be hard, but I still want to try and go for it.

I've been captain of this team since the Olympics in Salt Lake City in 2002.  The way I lead depends on the situation in the game and the feeling I have.  Sometimes I can stay quiet but still be a leader and sometimes I can be loud!

Until next time!

Mark


Posted by: Mark Streit at 6:17 pm MSD on May 9, 2007

The win over Denmark was a huge relief for us. We were all really excited about the win. For us, the first step is always to advance to the second round so we need to win those crucial games against the teams ranked lower than us. Those games are always really tight and there's a lot of pressure on us because everyone expects us to win. We don't have any easy games here, even against teams like Italy and Latvia. You can only lose against them. The quarterfinals are next and that's when the fun part starts. The pressure is gone.

Coming over here, I had to adjust my game a bit. It's a different game on the big ice! And after playing forward, it took me some time to get used to playing defense again. On top of that, our team's system was different but now I'm comfortable with everything. There's a lot more skating on the big ice.

I haven't seen much from the other games. There hasn't been time to see any live but sometimes on a day off I'll relax and maybe watch a bit on tv. Not every game though because they aren't all broadcast here.

I saw Halak at the Red Square the other day. I spotted some of the Slovakian players so I looked for him. It was the first time I'd seen any Montreal teammates. Pleky, Markov and him were all staying at another hotel. The Czech team switched hotels a few days ago so I'll probably see Pleky soon.

I've seen some Swiss fans here but there aren't as many as there usually are during the World Championships because it's expensive to make the trip to Moscow. The prices in Moscow are expensive too. It's even more expensive than Switzerland! A cappuccino is like 6 bucks. A day of internet at the hotel we're in now is $40 CDN. It was $70 CDN per day at the first hotel we were in...no joke!

The weather has been pretty good too.  No rain yet and for the most part it's been sunny.  Sometimes it's been a bit chilly, though.

We're two to a room here and I'm sharing with Abby. It's the first time he and I are rooming together and he might not want to share one with me again. He always complains about my sleeping habits and tells I'm always tossing and turning in my sleep. I don't sleep well in these beds and neither does he. At least now we've had a few days to relax and recharge before our game against Canada tomorrow.

Until next time!

Mark


Posted by: Mark Streit at 3:01 pm MSD on May 5, 2007

I've played in a lot of World Championships but I'd never been to Moscow before.  I got here on the Tuesday before the tournament started. 

Kremlin

It was a pretty quiet flight, no stories from the trip over.  I didn't know what to expect from this city.  I was really surprised at how huge it is!

We've had a day off between games so far so during my free time, I've gone downtown a couple of times.  I've gone to the famous Red Square and the Kremlin (where the Russian government is).  That was really cool.  I was really impressed.  Next on my list of things to see is Lenin's mausoleum.  I really want to see that.  After one of the days downtown, I went with David and some of the other guys for dinner.  We may be in Russia, but kept the meal close to home and went to a Swiss restaurant.

We've actually had two team dinners at that restaurant.  The director of Swiss hockey organized it.  Last night was the second time we went.  The manager invited the whole team because it was his birthday.

Red Square

The food has been good, whether it's at the hotel or in a restaurant.  There's a sushi place across the street from the hotel that we've gone to sometimes.  It was really good, especially when you compare it to sushi in Montreal. Those are great and still a bit better. 

The weather has been pretty good too.  No rain yet and for the most part it's been sunny.  Sometimes it's been a bit chilly, though.

On the hockey side of things, we're missing some veteran players on our team so we've got a young roster this year.  Being the underdog isn't anything new for us and I think it's a role that fits us the best!  Up until now, we haven't really played our best so we need to pick it up.  This group of guys has a lot of potential.  Thursday's game against the Finns, even though we lost, was definitely our best so far.

Today we're playing Denmark.  It's a huge game for us because a win gets us into the quarterfinals. That's all that matters now.

Until next time!

Mark