Forget the Super Bowl and upcoming soccer World Cup in South Africa: the greatest game of 2010 has already taken place in Vancouver.
Canada and the United States faced off in ice hockey last Sunday, during the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, in one of those memorable games that changes the lives of all present in the arena, from players to spectators.
Brimming with technique, grit and excitement, the Olympic final that handed Canada its 14th gold, a record for the Winter Games, was decided 7:40 min into extra time, after the USA took the game into sudden-death overtime with a dramatic goal, just 20 seconds before time ran out.
GRACIEMAG.com put together a list of 10 lessons the historic “MMA on ice” match inspired:
10) Every great victor possesses a great defense. If you like to attack, tirelessly practice defense, and you shall become an ace in the counter-attack.
9) Strength, technique, movement and aim are crucial factors in overcoming a great adversary.
8) In ice hockey it’s common for a team to play with a player less due to some penalty. To withstand the pressure of playing a man down, there’s no formula other than training and training a lot the defensive line’s posture with one or two players fewer. Make your training harder to achieve better results.
7) An ace is an athlete endowed with lots of technique, talent and discipline. An idol is one who makes the decisive play at the most difficult moment.
6) There’s always time to tie up the score.
5) Losing to someone is already a first step in beating them next time around.
4) Hockey goalies are an inspiration to Jiu-Jitsu players. He’s compact, closed up tight and leaves no openings as keeper of the goal on ice. In Jiu-Jitsu, elbows should generally be tucked up against the body and not left out in the air, waiting to get caught in a lock.
3) Slips happen all the time. How you react to a spill is what determines the end result in the dispute.
2) “When a man tires is when the fight starts,” Carlos Gracie used to say. Be prepared for however many overtimes are necessary.
1) Always wear your mouth guard.