By Helene Elliott Los Angeles Times
February 22, 2010
When the NHL season resumes next week, there just might be some bragging done by the American Olympians in the Kings’ and Ducks’ locker rooms after Team USA’s 5-3 victory over Canada on Sunday in their final preliminary game of the Olympic hockey tournament.
The only Southern California player whose name turned up on the score sheet in a positive fashion was Bobby Ryan of the Ducks, who earned an assist on the Chris Drury goal that gave the Americans a 3-2 lead at 16:46 of the second period.
Dustin Brown of the Kings was stopped by Martin Brodeur on a second-period breakaway, and Ryan was stopped on a breakaway not long afterward. Ryan finished with a +1 plus/minus rating, while Brown was -1.
Jack Johnson, most often paired with Pittsburgh’s Brooks Orpik, played a team-high 21 minutes and 58 seconds for the U.S. The third King representative, Jonathan Quick, was designated the extra goalie and was not in uniform.
The Ducks’ other delegate to Team USA, defenseman Ryan Whitney, played only 1:20 in the third period and 5:22 in the game.
For Canada, Ducks forwards Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry each took a penalty, and Perry was in the box when Jamie Langenbrunner gave Team USA a 4-2 lead. Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer played 17:07 and was -1.
Drew Doughty of the Kings, most often paired with Chicago’s Duncan Keith, got a good dose of power-play time for Canada and played 23:20 overall. He was -1.
In the final game of Sunday’s hockey tripleheader, Ducks forwards Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu and their Finnish teammates were blanked by Sweden, 3-0.
Despite finishing second to Sweden in its group Finland gets the fourth and final bye into the quarterfinals, which begin on Wednesday.
Selanne said he was unhappy the Finns lost to the Swedes, who had beaten them in the gold-medal game at the Turin Olympics. The big difference here on Sunday, he said, was Sweden’s power play, which produced two of its goals.
“They did their homework,” he said. “There’s no excuses for some reason we didn’t skate in the beginning and they got the momentum. We gave way too much room for them and they were way better. I’m very disappointed we could not play even close to our level.”
Typically, he found a silver lining.
“If we really have to lose one game this is the time,” he said. “I’m just a little worried about how we play today. We were just watching. Nobody reacted. We were just watching what they do and then we reacted. At this level you’re going to get in trouble if you do that.”