The countdown is on for the Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Winter Olympics.
Technically, it’s been known since 2003 that Vancouver and Whistler would be hosting the international multi-sports event.
But with less than a year until the 2010 games get underway, preparations are in the final leg.
I wasn’t at the site where the torch and relay uniforms were unveiled on Thursday morning, a year to the day before the games begin. But I was in the area. Well, sort of.
During the morning that torchbearers Patricia Moreno of Vancouver and Regina resident Caleb Taylor held the all-white Olympic torch at a special celebration in Whistler, I was in Victoria, at the tail end of my week-long holiday from the Free Press. I took the ferry from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen that evening, and took a flight from Vancouver to Prince George the following morning.
I could read it in coastal newspapers and witness it on television. The pre-Olympics hype is clearly skyrocketing.
There continue to be protests on how the homeless population is suffering as a result of increased government spending in areas like venue construction and upgrades, infrastructure and sporting groups to prepare for the Olympics.
Not everybody is in support of this event. That’s not going to change.
Clearly, it’s going to take the combined effort of all the Olympic organizers and supporters to ensure the games are successful. For 17 days in February 2010, Vancouver will be the focus of the sporting world.
Looking at the head-to-head record between the Prince George Cougars and Chilliwack Bruins, it’s no mystery why the Cougars had a comfortable 14-point lead over the Bruins entering their Western Hockey League road game against the Tri-City Americans on Tuesday evening. With 23 wins, 35 losses, zero overtime setbacks and two shootout defeats (23-35-0-2), the Cougars had 48 points. Entering their game this evening at Kelowna, the Bruins (14-40-2-4) have 34 points on the season.
Seven of the Cougars’ victories, almost a third of their 23-win total, came against the Chilliwack Bruins. With one game remaining in their season series, the Cougars are a perfect 7-0-0-0 against Chilliwack this season. Furthermore, four of those Cougars victories came in regulation time with no points surrendered, including their last three matchups with Chilliwack. The Bruins have only collected three of a possible 14 points versus the Cougars this season, single-point efforts from two overtime losses and a shootout defeat.
The Cougars are undefeated against three other WHL teams this season the Edmonton Oil Kings, Prince Albert Raiders and Moose Jaw Warriors. The Cougars defeated Prince Albert and Moose Jaw at CN Centre on Oct. 8 and Jan. 6 respectively, the only head-to-head contests of the season against those squads, which play in the Eastern Conference’s East Division.
The Cougars are 2-0 against another Eastern Conference team, the Central Division’s Edmonton Oil Kings. If the Cats win both home games against Edmonton, this Friday and Saturday at CN Centre, they’ll sweep that four-game season series.
Records can be misleading. Take a look at the winning percentages of teams in the Western Hockey League.
I understand single points are awarded to teams for overtime and shootout losses. But shouldn’t they still be counted as defeats when calculating winning percentages?
It seems too generous to give teams winning percentages based on only regulation losses.
As of Tuesday, the WHL website had the Cougars eighth in the 10-team Western Conference with a .400 winning percentage. Using a calculator, I found their winning percentage in games either won or lost in regulation time to actually be .397, so it must’ve been rounded up.
But with two shootout defeats, the Cougars’ total winning percentage was actually .383. They’d won 23 of 60 games played.
The .500 figure means a team has won as many games as it has lost. Once again, it’s an inaccurate count since a team could’ve added extra losses in either overtime or the shootout.
As for the Spruce Kings, some people have considered them a .500 or near .500 team for the past couple of months. Again, they’ve won 24 of 58 total games, not 24 of 49 contests. The other nine games, which resulted in three ties and six overtime losses, should still be counted. Their overall winning percentage is .414 entering this weekend’s home-and-home set with the Quesnel Millionaires.
An overtime or shootout victory still counts as a win. Shouldn’t defeats in extra time be treated the same way?
Interested in hearing what Alistair McInnis has to say about local sports? The Free Press sports editor is also a regular member of the panel on Friday Night Lights, a weekly radio sports talk show on 93.1 CFIS-FM. The show runs every Friday beginning at 6 p.m., breaking for Panago Spruce Kings hockey, and ending at 11 p.m.