Bryzgalov is an Olympic veteran, making his third straight appearance for Russia at the Olympic Games. He was a bronze medalist as a back-up goalie in 2002, and finished fourth in 2006.
In each of the last two World Championships, Russia has defeated Canada in the gold medal game, including in 2009 with Bryzgalov in goal. He led his country to gold with a 2.08 goals-against average and a perfect 7-0 record.
He competed for Russia at the 2000 World Junior Championships, leading the tournament with a 0.77 goals-against average and .971 save-percentage in four games to win a silver medal. The final game against the Czechs was a 0-0 deadlock and required a shootout to end the game.
I downplayed the first one because I thought it's just a hockey game. We just want to win the game; it's against our rival and we want the two points. I downplayed it, but now having gone through the first one I look back and say, 'Geez, that was really cool.' I think as I've grown a bit older I've got a lot more appreciation for what we're allowed to do every day.
— Capitals forward Brooks Laich on the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, the second one of his career after 2011 in Pittsburgh