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Babcock hopes school tie brings Canada luck

Fourth-Place Medal

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Team Canada coach Mike Babcock has gone old-school for the gold-medal hockey game.

One's of Babcock's trademarks is honoring his alma mater, McGill University in Montreal, by wearing a school tie for big games. It's unmistakable, since the school color is a bright, brilliant red.

McGill staff weren't sure if Babcock had taken a lucky school tie with him at the Games. They sent him the traditionally solid navy blue one festooned with McGill crests last week just to make sure.

However, when Babcock appeared for a pregame interview with CTV's Ryan Rishaug, he was proudly sporting a red tie. Perhaps he thought navy blue was too close to Team USA's colors.

Tapping into the McGill connection couldn't hurt. Canada's gold medal-winning women's hockey team included three products of the McGill Martlets women's hockey program, defender Catherine Ward and goaltenders Kim St-Pierre and Charline Labonté, plus assistant coach Peter Smith. You might have noticed that when Dick Pound, a former McGill chancellor, performed the medal presentations last Thursday, he gave each of the three McGill players the two-cheek kiss common in Quebec.

By official count, Babcock's Detroit Red Wings are 5-2 when he wears a school tie. He did not wear one during the Wings' loss to Sidney Crosby's Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final.

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