Jussi Jokinen and Olli Maatta
are coming back to Pittsburgh with bronze medals.
Both Penguins scored for Team Finland on Saturday in their 5-0 win over Team USA and associate GM Ray Shero, head coach Dan Bylsma and defensemen Brooks Orpik and Paul Martin. Orpik played, but Martin did not, missing his second straight game with a cast on his hand (he also did not play Friday against Canada).
Jokinen’s goal was huge. After the two teams produced a tight, scoreless first period, Teemu Selanne opened the scoring early in the second period. And just 11 seconds later, Jokinen delivered a big blow to the U.S. psyche by making it 2-0 when he swept a perfect pass from Jori Lehtera into the open net before American goaltender Jonathan Quick could slide over.
Jokinen had a tremendous tournament, finishing with three goals and five points in six games. This is his second Olympic medal, as he won silver in 2006.
Maatta medaled in his first-ever Olympics, another impressive accomplishment for the 19-year-old rookie. And while the team effort is what’s important to Maatta, we have to give him credit for his individual performance. With just one game left to be played between Canada and Sweden for on Sunday, Maatta ranked fourth in scoring among defensemen with three goals and five points in six games, matching his veteran teammate Jokinen's total.
He scored Finland’s fifth and final goal on a power play in the third period. He noticed a seam by the Americans’ net and sneakily drifted into it, where Lehtera found Maatta with a pass that he rifled into the net.
The Americans were held scoreless for a second straight game, which was rather unexpected after they had led the tournament with 20 goals in their first four games. Their fourth-place finish comes after they won silver back in 2010.
Congratulations to all of the Penguins players and staff that participated in the bronze medal game! Next up, Sidney Crosby, Chris Kunitz and Team Canada will face Sweden in the gold medal game on Sunday at 7 a.m. EST.
Photos from the bronze medal game (courtesy of Getty Images):