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(Page 146 of 177)
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Loss 'crushing' for Swiss team expecting more

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 3:42 PM / 2014 Olympics

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SOCHI -- Stunned. Disappointed. Angry.

Pick your synonym to any of the above words and it fits the description for how Switzerland's national team players felt late Tuesday night as they dejectedly walked off the ice and right out of the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the tournament they thought would put them on the map with the rest of the big boys in international hockey.

"It's crushing," Swiss defenseman Mark Streit said, summing up the feeling his teammates had following their 3-1 loss to Latvia in the qualification round.

This wasn't supposed to happen; not to the Swiss, not against Latvia, not with Canada looming in the quarterfinals and a chance to cement their status as a legitimate international contender.

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Break about over, NHL teams set for furious finish

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 2:15 PM / NHL Insider

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

It's almost time for the NHL to reopen for business.

Starting at 2 p.m. local time Wednesday, teams can start holding practices for players who didn't go to the 2014 Sochi Olympics or whose teams have been eliminated. They'll have a few days together to get ready for when the season restarts with a game between the Carolina Hurricanes and Buffalo Sabres on Feb. 25.

With 53 days left before the regular season ends April 13, there's a lot of work left to be done for many teams.

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Russia offense still unbalanced heading into quarters

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 12:45 PM / 2014 Olympics

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

SOCHI -- Offense wasn't expected to be an issue for the Russians at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, but in the past three games it has been.

Now the host team will face its toughest defensive test yet.

Russia has scored six goals in the past three games, and two of those came late in a 4-0 win against Norway that already was decided. After losing 3-2 in a shootout to the United States and defeating Slovakia 1-0 in a shootout, the Russians continued to dictate the play as they have for long stretches of every game, but the goals are not coming as expected.

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U.S. focused on pushing the pace even faster

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 12:11 PM / 2014 Olympics

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SOCHI -- While their neighbors to the north are focused on figuring out line combinations and how and where they should attack heading into the quarterfinals, the United States simply is focused on playing faster than it has been in the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

Speed kills, even on the big ice, but U.S. coach Dan Bylsma doesn't think his team has been killing it with enough speed in the tournament despite winning all three preliminary-round games and scoring 14 goals in regulation.

"I would say there are opportunities that we have missed that we can play quickly, play north, push the pace up the ice," Bylsma said. "That's something we did well at times; I just think we can be better at realizing that."

Bylsma spent Tuesday emphasizing the speed game he'd like to see his team play Wednesday in the quarterfinals against the Czech Republic (Noon ET, USA, TSN2).

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Predators GM Poile expected back at work this week

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 10:46 AM / 2014 Olympics

The Nashville Predators announced Tuesday that general manager David Poile is expected to return to work this week.

Poile was struck in the face by a puck Feb. 6 while attending a Predators morning skate at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn. He was taken to a St. Paul-area hospital and had two surgeries the next day to repair a fractured orbital bone and fractures in his nose. Poile returned to his home in Nashville on Feb. 9.

The injuries prevented Poile, general manager for the United States Olympic team, from attending the 2014 Sochi Olympics.


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Lundqvist in net the constant that powers Sweden

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 8:18 AM / 2014 Olympics

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

SOCHI -- Near the end of Sweden's practice Tuesday, the team's goaltending coach was on the ice using an iPad to film a few drills involving New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.

Lundqvist said he doesn't normally see video of practices in New York, but it's a good way for him to monitor his net coverage and the angles at which he receives shot attempts with a couple of days between games.

The 2012 Vezina Trophy winner has had a strong start to the 2014 Sochi Olympics, but like his teammates still is seeking improvements.

"I think we feel like we can do better, but at the same time we have all the points we wanted," Lundqvist said. "We are winning games. The most important thing in a tournament like this is to find ways to win even if you're not at your best. I hope we can continue to get better every game."

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Price's time in Montreal prepared him for Sochi

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 7:45 AM / 2014 Olympics

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

SOCHI -- Carey Price was answering questions from reporters Tuesday after being named Canada's starting goalie for the quarterfinals at the 2014 Sochi Olympics while a few of his teammates still were on the ice practicing behind him.

As he spoke, one of his teammates on the ice shot a puck that was deflected high off the protective netting behind him and Price flinched to see if it would hit him, even though it was behind his back.

"Sixth sense," Price said with a smile. "No, I read your eyes."

That innate sense for seeing pucks he has no business seeing is what has led Price to this point in his roller-coaster career, tending goal for Canada in a game where if he has a bad one his team's tournament could be over. And a country will weep.

No pressure, though.

For years there was some question as to whether Price ever would reach these heights. He struggled to find some consistency in his game playing perhaps the most pressure-packed position in North American professional sports: starting goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens.

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Bettman: World Cup of Hockey could return

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 5:44 AM / 2014 Olympics

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SOCHI -- The NHL and National Hockey League Players' Association could potentially hold a World Cup of Hockey in future years without disrupting its recent practice of having players participate in the Winter Olympics, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said Tuesday.

"Yes, it's a possibility," Daly said.

The League and the NHLPA have been having ongoing discussions about the potential of bringing back the World Cup of Hockey, which has not been played since 2004. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday negotiations for player participation in the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics have not yet begun.

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Bettman: Olympic decision possible within 6 months

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 5:33 AM / 2014 Olympics

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

SOCHI -- The NHL and NHL Players' Association are hoping to make a decision on future player participation in the Olympics as quickly as possible, perhaps within the next six months, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman indicated in a press conference at Bolshoy Ice Dome on Tuesday.

The negotiations, which will involve the NHL, the Olympic organizing committee in South Korea, the NHLPA, the International Ice Hockey Federation and the International Olympic Committee, will determine whether the NHL sends its players to a sixth straight Olympics. NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr and IIHF President Rene Fasel also took part in the press conference.

"It's nothing that's been discussed; it's nothing that will be discussed while we're here in Sochi," Commissioner Bettman said. "All of us are here to enjoy this competition, and while I've seen lots of commentary over the last couple of weeks, both written and oral, the fact of the matter is there isn't anything that has been said in the last two weeks that hasn't been said for the last eight years.

"There are lots of people who have lots of opinions. Any of us could give you all the pros and cons involved. You can get quotes from any owner or any executive in the NHL on either side of the decision, and as I've said it isn't anything we're focused on and dealing with right now. We're all focused on what should be a terrific tournament, period, on that subject."


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Small in stature, Jets prospect Petan playing big game

Tuesday, 02.18.2014 / 3:00 AM / In the Pipeline

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- As an undersized center, Winnipeg Jets prospect Nicolas Petan could have picked an easier path to pro hockey.

Petan could have played college hockey instead of the Western Hockey League, giving him more time to fill out a slender 5-foot-9 frame. But he wanted to prove his game already was big enough for a pro-style game, so he went to the Portland Winterhawks instead.

"As a small guy he could have looked in another direction, taken his time in college, but he wanted to prove he could play in a physical, demanding league," Portland coach and general manager Mike Johnston said. "Everybody asks if a small guy can play with the big guys. He wanted to prove to everybody he could play major junior."

Petan has done just that. He tied linemate Brendan Leipsic for the WHL scoring lead with 120 points in 71 games last season and was picked in the second round (No. 43) by the Jets in the 2013 NHL Draft. And after a strong showing at a preseason camp and tournament for NHL prospects, Petan has continued to dominate in the WHL this season.

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Just the feel for the direction they were headed and what they're trying to do, it just felt that this is a really good thing for this organization. They've got the pieces. We can put something together and go on a run or two and be together for a while, and I'm really excited about that opportunity. The team we have here has an opportunity to win, and that's the most attractive thing.

— Washington defenseman Matt Niskanen on why he decided to sign with the Capitals