May 4, 2008
Crushers playing underdog character
CORNWALL -- The Weeks Crushers are selling the underdog story to whoever will bite.
Entering their game against the Camrose Kodiaks in the RBC tournament today, head coach Troy Ryan is praising his opponent.
"Without a doubt, (the Kodiaks) are the number one team (in the RBC Cup)," said Ryan.
"We're probably the only group that thinks we can do relatively well here.
"We are coming in as the underdog.
"But we like that situation."
That means there is no pressure on the East representative.
Some Junior A insiders believe Weeks and Cornwall are the weak sisters and will compete for the fourth and final playoff spot in this five-team tournament.
But the Crushers enter the RBC Cup on an amazing roll by knocking off three league champions to win the Fred Page Cup.
In the Fred Page title game, Weeks beat Pembroke - the No. 1 ranked Junior A team in the country at the time - in shocking fashion.
It means the so-called underdog might pack quite a bite.
KODIAKS TAKE: The Camrose coaching staff is quietly admitting they don't have any video on the Crushers.
That's not the case with the rest of the opponents in this tournament.
The Kodiaks are relying on a very highly-placed anonymous scout to help them prepare for the Maritime Junior A Hockey League team.
"They have good speed up front and have a couple of guys that are mobile on the back end," said Camrose assistant coach Doug Fleck.
FAST FACTS: The Crushers are based in New Glasgow, NS, about 85 minutes from Halifax ... Named after a construction company, this team doesn't boast a single player on the NHL Central Scouting Rankings ... Today's game will mark the Crushers first ever appearance in the RBC Cup... Crushers' forward Jordan Knox was the 2006 Canadian Junior A player of the year.