It's often said that hockey unites Canadians like nothing else.
Sunday, it's simply expected that virtually every television in every small town home, in every big city condo, in every restaurant and bar from coast to coast to coast will be tuned to the same channel come Noon Pacific Time, on the final day of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games from Vancouver.
On Saturday morning, the Toronto Sun on my doorstep featured a front-page message "Now it's time to Spank the Yanks!"
And these headlines in print and on newspaper websites give one an idea of what is gripping the nation.
"Team Canada prepares for the game of their lives" says the Edmonton Journal.
"Team Canada – Team USA Showdown: Iginla fired by memories of 2002" can be found in the Vancouver Province.
While the Vancouver Sun states "Luongo hoping to save his best for Gold Medal Game against U.S.".
Brian Duff is a broadcaster on NHL Network and can be seen nightly during the season alongside co-host Dan Pollard on NHL On The Fly.
In this week's column, Duff looks at the stunning comebacks that have defined the season's first month.
Slam Sports on canoe.ca represents the Sun chain of newspapers found across the country. Among their headlines: "Babcock Bracing For Golden Challenge", "Canada doesn't want to see another Miracle", and "Getzlaf is the real deal at these Games".
National dailies like the Globe and Mail – "Canada not so Crosby Centric", and the National Post – "No Lack of Pressure for Canada or the U.S." had their say as well.
And yet the Canadian Press story that would likely appear in dozens, if not hundreds of papers across the land was a great reminder of just how far this game will reach; "Yanks talking tough but Canucks in Afghanistan have Gold in their sights".
Montreal, Sorel, Penticton, Sicamous, Tsawwassen, London, Dryden, Ottawa, Cranbrook, Carlyle, Aneroid, St. Albert, Calgary, Winnipeg, Kenora, St. Thomas, Thunder Bay, Peterborough, Sillery, Regina, Brampton, and Cole Harbour, are places the players call home.
Team Canada comes from 7 of the 10 provinces, with only New Brunswick, Newfoundland, and Prince Edward Island not represented.