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Olympic Preliminary Round: Feb. 13

by Michael Smith / Carolina Hurricanes is providing complete coverage of the four Canes players participating in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Player Features: Justin Faulk | Andrej Sekera | Tuomo Ruutu | Alexander Semin | Game Recaps: Semifinals, Feb. 21 | Quarterfinals, Feb. 19 | Qualification, Feb. 18 | Prelims, Feb. 16 | Prelims, Feb. 14-15 | Related Links: Olympic Viewing Guide | Printable Broadcast Schedule | Full Schedule, Results & Stats

Michael Smith
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All four teams involving Carolina Hurricanes Olympians were involved in first-game action on Thursday.

FIN 8, AUT 4 [Recap, Stats]: Tuomo Ruutu and Finland were involved in a wild 8-4 victory over Austria. Tukka Rask surrendered four goals on 20 shots, but Finland fired 52 shots on Bernhard Starkbaum, scoring a touchdown and the two-point conversion. Ruutu, who we will profile on our site on Friday, posted an assist in 14:59 of ice time for the Finns.

RUS 5, SLO 2 [Recap, Stats]: The host country's national team took on a Slovenia team that hung tough for much of the game. Alexander Semin posted an assist in Team Russia’s 5-2 victory, as he nicely sprung Evgeni Malkin on a two-on-one. Alexander Ovechkin then finished with a snap shot that no one was stopping. Semin, who we will profile on our site on Sunday, finished with a plus-2 rating.

USA 7, SVK 1 [Recap, Stats]: Finally (and most importantly, because #America), Team USA faced Slovakia in what was supposed to be the first Canes-centric head-to-head match-up. Though Andrej Sekera (Olympic profile) was a first-pairing defenseman for the Slovaks, Justin Faulk (Olympic profile) was the healthy extra for the Americans. Team USA led 1-0 after a period, but a touchdown’s worth of goals in the second period alone propelled them to a big 7-1 victory. Quite amazingly, Sekera skated a team-high 19:08 yet was still even in plus/minus.

Upcoming will be Finland vs. Norway on Friday at noon (MSNBC), followed by Slovakia vs. Slovenia on Saturday at 3 a.m. (MSNBC) and USA vs. Russia at 7:30 a.m. (NBCSN). A full, printable broadcast schedule plus much more information and goodies can be found in our Olympic viewing guide. We’ll have a similar wrap-up available on Saturday recapping the second game for each of the four teams featuring Canes skaters.

For a full list of Olympic ice hockey schedule and results, including individual player statistics, please click here.

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