I'll take a heaping helping of crow, please, but not too much, because I want to leave some room for humble pie.
After a disappointing first week for Canada in Vancouver, I wrote off the Olympic "Own the Podium" initiative as a typical example of ill-conceived claptrap conjured up by bureaucrats who set unrealistic goals, then run for cover and let someone else take the blame when the expectations don't pan out. I still think it was presumptuous, boastful and decidedly un-Canadian, but there's no disputing the results. Whether we amassed a Canadian record 26 medals - including a Winter Olympic record 14 gold - because of "Own the Podium" or despite it is for the athletes to answer.
-The biggest revelation of the Olympic hockey tournament - for me, at least - was the collective strength of the next generation of Canadian defencemen. Drew Doughty, Duncan Keith and Shea Weber were absolute beasts, Brent Seabrook didn't look out of place, and if you project Mike Green, Brent Burns and Dion Phaneuf into the mix for the next Olympics, that's a lot of thunder and lightning on the Team Canada blue line in 2014.
-Speaking of Doughty and Weber, what a shame that emerging talents of their calibre are plying their professional trade in hockey backwaters like Los Angeles and Nashville. Ditto Rick Nash in Columbus. Imagine Brampton, Ontario's Nash as a Leaf, Ottawa native Doughty as a Senator or the BC-born Weber as a Canuck. They would be hockey gods.
-After scoring the Olympic gold medal-clinching overtime goal on top of winning the Stanley Cup, what does Sidney Crosby do for a second encore?
-Habs at Boston tomorrow night; who gets the start - a well-rested Carey Price or Jaroslav Halak, who backstopped ninth-ranked Slovakia to a fourth place finish in Vancouver? Let the arguing, bickering, finger-pointing, pissing and moaning begin. God, how I've missed it.