Latvian hockey fans fill the streets and serenade Canucks’ Silovs with MVP chants

Photo credit:TV3 Ziņas
David Quadrelli
1 year ago
It was the greatest Latvian hockey performance in history.
Latvia played host to the 2023 IIHF World Championship and managed to take home a bronze medal. Not only does that mark their first time every earning a medal at an event, their quarterfinal upset victory over Sweden marked the first time that Latvia advanced past the quarterfinal round in the history of any IIHF event.
Simply put, it’s been a long time coming, and the hockey-crazy Latvian fans are going to cherish this moment, as they should. For every game their nation’s squad played, the Riga crowd was absolutely electric. We hear so much about the loud buildings in the NHL and how players — on the home team, of course — talk about how much a raucous home crowd can swing momentum in their team’s favour. We heard this plenty with the Abbotsford Canucks during the playoffs — a team Silovs also backstopped.
Something tells us Silovs has never experienced anything quite like this though.
On Sunday, Silovs and Latvia pulled off the comeback overtime upset on Team USA in the Bronze medal game, and shortly after, Silovs was named tournament MVP. As if that wasn’t cool enough, the Latvian team returned home on Monday to find the streets littered with hockey fans singing their praises. Seriously, look at that crowd!
Even cooler for Silovs, he was serenaded by those sam thousands of fans with “MVP” chants.
He was Latvia’s most valuable player in every sense of the word, and according to the IIHF, he was the most valuable player of the whole damn tournament.
Silovs appeared in all 10 games for Latvia, and was the author of a .921 save percentage and a 2.20 goals against average. In Latvia’s quarterfinal matchup against Sweden, Silovs stopped 40 of the 41 shots he faced to secure the victory on a night his team registered just 15 shots of their own. He is just the fifth goaltender to be named MVP since the award was first given out in 1999.
Per Gord Miller of TSN, Latvian captain Kaspars Daugavins said that Monday has been declared a national holiday in Latvia.

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