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U.S. Men Lose to Finland in Olympic Bronze Medal Game

02/22/2014, 10:30am MST
By USAHockey.com

SOCHI, Russia – The U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team lost to Finland, 5-0, in the bronze-medal game of the Olympic Winter Games. Prior to Finland’s three-goal third period, Team USA was unable to capitalize on a pair of penalty shots in the first 40 minutes.
 
At 13:40 of the first period, Team USA was awarded a penalty shot when a Finn swatted a broken stick at a U.S. player. On the ensuing chance, Patrick Kane (Buffalo, N.Y./Chicago Blackhawks) aimed too far right on his backhand. Minutes later, Max Pacioretty (New Canaan, Conn./Montreal Canadiens) shot wide after gaining a step on the Finland defense.
 
Finland surged ahead 2-0 with goals 11 seconds apart early in the second period. At 1:27, Teemu Selanne fired a backhander from the left circle inside the near post. Then on a two-on-two rush, Jussi Jokinen scored on a one-timer.
 
Kane got his second penalty shot of the game at 13:36 after being slashed on a breakaway. His forehand shot beat Tuuka Rask only to clang off the right post and out.

Finland sealed its victory with third period power-play goals at 6:10, 9:06 and 13:09. Jusso Hietanen tallied first, followed by Selanne and Olli Maata.

Jonathan Quick (Milford, Conn./Los Angeles Kings) made 22 saves, while Rask had 27 stops for Finland.
 
Team USA completed the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in fourth place with a 3-1-0-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record.


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March 27, 2017 | When USA Hockey implemented its American Development Model in 2009, one element of the nationwide age-appropriate training blueprint sparked more debate than any other: cross-ice hockey for 8U players. In the years since, an abundance of evidence, both data-driven and anecdotal, has proven the developmental advantages of cross-ice hockey.

This week, Hockey Canada announced that it too will introduce its players to the game through cross-ice play beginning in 2017-18.

“Re-sizing the playing surface to cross-ice or half-ice means more puck touches, which result in more chances to practice puck control and shooting, as well as overall more movement and motor skill-development – twisting, turning, balance, coordination, agility,” said Paul Carson, vice-president of membership development for Hockey Canada, in a release today. “Their field-of-play matches their size, and these players hone in on their skill-development in a way that larger ice surfaces just aren’t conducive to.”

The Grassroots Show on Ottawa’s TSN 1200 weighed in on the decision. Click the audio link below to hear how Canada is embracing cross-ice hockey for the coming season and beyond.

Tom Renney, president and CEO of Hockey Canada, appeared on the Grassroots Show to discuss the nationwide shift to cross-ice hockey, beginning this fall for 5- and 6-year-olds and expanding to all of Canada's Novice (8U) level in 2018-19.

“When you see 10 or 12 or 14 or 16 kids out on the ice in between periods and they’re playing 200-by-85 and 3 or 4 kids touch the puck in that whole six minutes, yet there’s people in the stands clapping and thinking it’s wonderful, I just can’t help but think about the 95 percent of the children that didn’t even touch the puck or get from one end of the rink to the other and I ask myself what are we doing when the opportunity is certainly there to have 30 kids on the ice playing cross-ice and everyone is having a much better opportunity to touch the puck, skate a shorter distance and really play. It just boggles my mind,” said Renney.

“We completely embrace, at the Initiation level and the Novice level, cross-ice hockey and we have mandated that in the Initiation program and we will mandate it across the country in Novice hockey.

“This is about the pure enjoyment of the game, and your first connection with it has to be something that’s pure fun, on a surface of play that is conducive to much more participation and joy.”

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