Sunday, February 28, 2010

Flyers at the Olympics: the Medal Round

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
So close! After a great run, Team USA came up just short in their quest for a gold medal. The US's loss was the gain of two Flyers, however. Here is a recap of how your Flyers did during the Medal Round:

Medal Round theme: Why did it have to be Crosby?

Gold Medal Game:
Canada 3, USA 2, OT After starting slow, the US clawed their way back into this one, getting a goal from Zach Parise in the final minute of regulation to force overtime. Ryan Miller was stellar in net all game long and only made one bad play; unfortunately, that bad play was in overtime on a shot by Sidney Crosby that won gold for Canada. While the US deserves a ton of credit for overcoming the odds and getting the silver medal, it was nice to see them not be happy with coming in second place after they lost the game. It's important to remember that this US team is really young and they just got a ton of experience on the world stage. If NHL players are going to Russia in 2014, the US has to be considered one of the favorites.

As for the Flyers in the game, both Mike Richards and Chris Pronger did their part to earn the gold. Richards had an assist on the first goal of the game by Jonathan Toews and he really settled into his checking role nicely for Canada. Richards played just under 15 minutes in the game and also had two shots on goal. Despite being largely criticized for his play in the tournament, Pronger put together a nice effort, leading the Canadian team with 23 minutes of ice time. He wasn't always out there when the Canadians needed to shut down the US but he was never on the ice when a goal was scored against him on Sunday. Let's hope Richards and Pronger can take this experience with Canada back to the Flyers and lead them to a championship of their own.

Bronze Medal Game:
Finland 5, Slovakia 3
Kimmo Timonen and the Fins knocked off Slovakia to earn the bronze medal. Timonen continued to be one of the best players on the ice for Finland, notching a team high 26 minutes of ice time and a pair of assists. He was a great player throughout the tournament, whatever the Fins needed him to do, Timonen did it. Hopefully he didn't get too worn down by the big minutes in pressure situations and now he can come back to the Flyers and continue to be his usual consistent self.

That's it for my daily game recaps of how the Flyers did on each day of the Olympics. Look for a complete statistical recap of each Flyer in the Olympics coming tomorrow. After that, this blog will return to its regular Flyers programming with the focus on what the orange and black can do to bring home the Cup.

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