Olympics alert: Canada defeats USA in women's hockey prelim

Russians USA fall in NHL-less Olympic openers

The men's hockey tournament opened Wednesday with a pair of upsets as Slovenia edged the US 3-2 in overtime and Slovakia defeated the Russian entry 3-2.

Finland and the Russian team will play quarter-final games Saturday against Switzerland and Sweden. "I don't think that there's any better way".

All eyes are on the smooth-skating, offensively gifted 17-year-old defenseman at the Olympics with the entire hockey community aware that he's nearly a lock to be the No. 1 pick in the NHL draft this June. "The communication that we've had with these players, you can hear them shaking on the other end of the phone with excitement and anticipation and pride, and we're going to have to carry that over with how we play".

Still, it's not a great start for a team that already had questions heading into the competition. "But I think what the 1980 team... what they did for us is, it gave us our confidence, our sense of pride and our style of play".

The Boston University junior and Terriers left winger is the first African-American player to skate in the Olympics for the USA men's ice hockey team since the sport was introduced to the Games in 1920, an experience he hopes will inspire other young black athletes. "I would like to come back and continue to play", she says. Bakos charged down the right wing and rocketed a shot high glove-side to tie the score on just Slovakia's fourth shot of the game.

Agosta scored a power-play goal at 7:18 on a backhand feed from Natalie Spooner at the corner of the U.S.net. The U.S. team has four college players, some former NHL players and many others who either couldn't establish themselves in the NHL or never got the chance to play there but continued to play hockey in leagues around the world.

That didn't matter when the 30-year-old scored the game-tying goal after Slovenia pulled its goalie with 1:37 to play, and the victor 38 seconds into overtime.

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After a strong forecheck, Bourque skated out from the corner to re-direct captain Chris Lee's blast from the top of the faceoff circle past goalie Leonardo Genoni at 2:57. The power play was good. Then once they made it, they were anxious about getting injured. His skating and puck-moving looks effortless.

Swiss players who have spent time in the National Hockey League this season include Roman Josi, Kevin Fiala and Yannick Weber (Nashville), Mirco Mueller, Nico Hischier and Christoph Bertschy (New Jersey), Sven Andrighetto (Colorado), Sven Baertschi (Vancouver), Reto Berra (Anaheim), Dean Kukan (Columbus), Denis Malgin (Florida), Timo Meier (San Jose), Nino Niederreiter (Minnesota) and Luca Sbisa (Las Vegas).

"Yeah, we're not anxious about it", said Stauber after watching his team absorb a fifth straight loss to Canada.

"Throughout the year, we actually have made sure with our game times and our practice times that we varied them", Schuler said. "We kind of stopped doing that in the third period". He urged his players to file it away and look forward.

"Job 1 done", Lee added following his two-assist effort.

Even if we don't know who's who or what's what? "First of all, what I like, though - I like how we're going into this tournament". Both teams expect to reach the gold medal game once again, but this early contest could set the tone for the inevitable future showdown.


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