Sochi hockey notebook: Canada seeks goals
TribLIVE Sports Videos
SOCHI, Russia — It's difficult to discern which should be a greater worry for Canada in facing the United States in the Olympic semifinals Friday: Offense or defense?
Forwards have accounted for only six of their 13 goals through four games. The other seven goals have come from defensemen Shea Weber and Drew Doughty.
“It's nice to get that from the D, for sure, but I think we're doing a lot of good things,” said Sidney Crosby, who along with linemate Chris Kunitz is one of nine forwards yet to score. “I think you just trust in what you do. I think as far as the depth that we have, we know that guys are going to put those in.”
Kunitz concurred: “We're getting some quality chances. Just need to find a way to bury them.”
The U.S. has been doing exactly that with a tournament-best 20 goals despite only three on the power play.
“They've been scoring a lot,” Kunitz said. “We're going to have to make sure we're good in our own end.”
Quick vs. Price
Dan Bylsma will stick by Jonathan Quick as the U.S. goaltender, and Mike Babcock will counter with Carey Price.
Bylsma showed no line changes in practice. Canada kept Crosby, Kunitz and Patrice Bergeron together and bumped Kunitz up to the top power play in place of injured John Tavares, who is out for the remainder of the Olympics and NHL season after tearing an MCL and meniscus.
Finns are among the friendliest people anywhere, but it's safe to say they'll face traditional rival Sweden in the other semifinal with a bit of a chip. Hours before Finland beat Russia, 3-1, in the quarterfinal, Sweden coach Par Marts made headlines by predicting a Russian victory.
“Obviously we'll take any extra motivation we can get,” Jussi Jokinen said. “Sweden and Finland, Olympic semifinal, I think we'll be ready to go either way.”
The spectacular goalie matchup on that front: Finland's Tuukka Rask vs. Sweden's Henrik Lundqvist.
Evgeni Malkin was among four Russian players who did not accompany most of their teammates on an NHL-leased charter flight back to North America on Friday.
Malkin, Alexander Ovechkin, Pavel Datsyuk and Alexander Semin agreed to stay for Sunday's Closing Ceremony. For Malkin at least, that was the plan all along.
Polie returning to work
The general manager of the U.S. hockey team and the Nashville Predators said the errant puck to the face two weeks ago has left him unable to see out of his right eye.
David Poile, who wore an eye patch, spoke briefly with reporters Thursday for the first time since being hit Feb. 6 during a pregame skate in Minnesota. The injury prevented Poile from attending the Sochi Olympics, so he has been talking to assistant general manager Ray Shero and coach Dan Bylsma daily.
“All I know is there's substantial damage such to the point that I don't have any sight today and ... they're holding out hope that maybe something will change as the eye heals,” Poile said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- NFL coaches weigh in on Polamalu’s legacy
- Arrests follow South Side fracas
- Spring training breakdown: Pirates 4, Braves 2
- Penguins’ Letang leaves hospital, ‘day-to-day’ with concussion
- Alvarez latest in Pirates’ revolving door at first base
- Flash!: ‘Bowling with the Bus’; Dreams of Hope fundraiser
- Oakmont club brings gardening inside at senior facility
- Income tax’s origin provides spark for Berry’s new thriller
- Shortfalls sabotage promise of union retirees’ pensions
- Michigan State tops Louisville in OT to reach Final Four
- Gifting Gala attendees tell of Family House’s support system