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Miller and Team USA come up just short

by John Dellapina
VANCOUVER -- Ryan Miller hoisted Team USA on his back and tried to carry it all the way to Olympic gold. He beat mighty Canada, shut out Finland and Switzerland in the medal round and was well into overtime of Sunday afternoon’s gold-medal game when somebody finally came up with a question that Miller could not answer.

Moments after suffering the heartbreak of losing 7:40 into overtime to Canada on a Sidney Crosby goal that squeezed between his butterflying pads, a crestfallen Miller stopped to share his thoughts with on his exhilarating but ultimately devastating day at Canada Hockey Place. -- Can you even put into perspective what Team USA accomplished these last two weeks, or are the emotions too raw right now?

Miller -- It’s a little too close right now. We know we were trying to help USA Hockey turn a page. And I guess this is a good start. But it kind of stings at the moment. -- On the deciding goal, it looked like the puck was heading up the boards and then the play came right back at you. Were you set in time to face Sidney Crosby?

Miller -- Yeah. I was thinking about pushing out on Sidney, because I’ve been aggressive all week and I wasn’t going to lose this game not being aggressive. He just got his head up quicker than I thought.
I really thought he was going to have time to pull it to the net more and set up an angle and I was going to try and surprise him a bit. But I don’t think he realized he had a little bit of room. -- You were cheered by Canadian fans when you received your silver medal and voted tournament MVP. Can you take any satisfaction out of what you personally accomplished here?

Miller -- I feel good about my game. But it kind of stinks coming up short. I guess I’ll get some perspective in a few weeks. -- You entered this tournament considered a cut below the hockey powers and perhaps not quite ready. Do you think Team USA’s performance made people rethink the international hockey peck order?

-- Well, Canada certainly has the bragging rights at the moment. But this was a close tournament. It could have gone either way.
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