SOCHI - The blowouts were rare, the guaranteed wins even more scarce.
Welcome to the men's Olympic hockey tournament, where the action was for the most part tight -- too tight for many North American eyes -- the home team was a spectacular self-destruction and the defending champions earned a chance to repeat their gold.
The tournament that unfolded at the sparkling Bolshoy Ice Dome and the intimate Shayba Arena concluded with a final between two of the favourites -- Canada and Sweden. But it wasn't a shoo-in for either team to make the gold-medal game.
"The hockey's getting more competitive, there are no easy games any more," said Daniel Sedin, who led his Swedish team to the gold medal final against Canada Sunday. "It makes it a lot of fun for the good teams because they know we're in for a challenge every night.