The ruling is still out on whether NHL players will be able to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, but today at media day for the World Cup of Hockey, Caps captain Alex Ovechkin made it clear to Pierre LeBrun that the ruling won’t affect his decision.
He will be there.
Over the last week, this area has been full of Maryland pride and for good reason. Baltimore native Michael Phelps and Bethesda native Katie Ledecky have dominated the Rio Olympics, winning a ridiculous eight gold medals combined. The pinnacle Maryland moment occurred on the medal stand Tuesday when Phelps’ friends yelled “O!” during the national anthem. You can’t get more Maryland than that.
As of Saturday morning, athletes from the Old Line State have won 12 of the United States’ 20 gold medals. If Maryland was a country by itself, it would have the second most golds in the Olympics, sitting right behind China (13). That is insanity.
To celebrate, I made a sexy new RMNB t-shirt.
Photo: David J. Phillip
Nicklas Backstrom did not participate in Sunday’s gold medal game against Canada. Originally reported as suffering from a migraine, we later learned Backstrom tested positive for a banned substance. Swedish hockey officials have stated that drug is an allergy medicine.
Here’s everything we know so far.
Photo: RIA Novosti
Canada shut out Sweden 3-0 to win gold in the last Olympic hockey tournament I will ever watch.
Three players who had been without a goal, Toews, Crosby, and Chris Kunitz, each scored in the effort.
Carey Price kept the Swedes without a goal, extending his shutout streak to 164 minutes.
Nick Backstrom did not play. Originally, reports stated Backstrom was suffering from a migraine. Now, an NHLPA source says Backstrom was disqualified for using a banned substance– possibly an allergy medicine containing pseudoephedrine.
So, not a great day for much of our readership.
Photo: RIA Novosti
Defeated. Deflated. Enervated. Team USA went down in flames against a flashy Finnish team, losing the bronze medal in stunning fashion. 5-0.
Patrick Kane missed two penalty shots. The American penalty kill sucked. Jonathan Quick let five pucks past him. Tuukka Rask was exemplary with a light workload.
No medal for America. Everything sucks and so do you. Let’s talk about it.
Damn. I don’t even want to write this.
Two Caps players will vie for gold on Sunday, but they won’t be Americans.
Marcus Johansson and Nick Backstrom won with Team Sweden to make the finals. Canada vs USA was David vs Goliath except Goliath won, and don’t even come at me with that Malcolm Gladwell craptrap.
Unlike this morning, Wednesday afternoon’s games went as planned. Well, almost. There was that whole thing where Latvia, led by inhuman goaltender Kristers Gudlevskis, scared the living hell out of Canadian Hockey Twitter for 55 minutes of rego hockey. But the US put away the Czechs with a strong, evenly distributed scoring effort, and that was pretty cool.
The wins by America and America’s stupid hat set up a rematch of the 2010 Vancouver finals for Friday at noon. It’s going to be absolutely unbearable; I need you to start rationing your anti-anxiety drugs now.
But first: let’s delve into the recap.
Photo: RIA Novosti
I think Team Russia is fascinating. Scoring just eleven goals in their first four games, the much-ballyhooed offense of the home team hasn’t really shown up yet– especially from their NHL stars. After a brilliant start with back-to-back goals by Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin in game one, Russia broke up its top line, sending Alex Semin to the dreaded checking assignments of the bottom six. The team’s power play, meanwhile, has converted just two of its 13 chances despite having a handful of the best offensive players in the world.
To most observers, Russia has been a disappointment. They’re still very much alive, playing Finland at 7:30 am on Wednesday, but what they’ve shown us so far isn’t what we were promised. Of course, four games is a measly sample– particularly when measuring rare events like goals and power plays. While there aren’t a lot of data available, let’s take a big old grain of salt and play with them anyway.
I don’t really have an agenda in sharing this stuff. I looked it up because I was curious; I thought you might be too.
And down they drop! Tuesday was the first day of elimination in the Olympic mens tournament, meaning lots of high stakes and desperate players. More importantly, the recaps will be easier from here on out because there will be fewer games. Maybe that’s not more important for you, but it is for me.
Peace out, Austria. Adios, Norway. Keep it real, Slovakia. YOLO, Switzerland.
Let’s do the recap.
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