Slovakia and Slovenia 3:00 AM EST. (SNET, NBCSN)
United States and Russia 7:30 AM EST. (CBC, NBCSN)
Switzerland and Czech Republic 12:00 EST. (TSN, NBCSN)
Sweden and Latvia 12:00 EST. (USA, SNET1)
What a way to start the weekend! Early this morning we'll have Slovakia and Slovenia face off to get things started and after that we'll have the game that everyone in the hockey world will be watching. Team USA and the host nation Team Russia will be facing off at 7:30 AM this morning. Both teams won their first contests, USA won theirs handily while Russia was given some trouble by the Slovenian team. The star power in this morning's game is obviously hard to overlook; Ovechkin, Malkin, Kovalchuk, and Datsyuk squaring off against the gritty Team USA. Reports indicate that Jonathan Quick will be getting the nod for the second straight game after he put on an impressive performance in Team USA's 7-1 roasting of Zdeno Chara's Slovak team.
Rangers in Action Today: Ryan Callahan, Ryan McDonagh, Derek Stepan, Carl Hagelin, and Henrik Lundqvist.
The focus of this thread is obviously for today's big game but please use this as your Open Thread for all of today's games (which is why we're throwing it up in time for the Slovakia and Slovenia game). I don't know about you guys but I'm absolutely in love with Olympic hockey. I don't care what nation the players are from or what gender they are I just love to watch the game at this level. It's enchanting.
To get us in the mood for taking on Russia I present you with this: Click Here.
Mike's Player to Watch:
#27 / Defenseman / New York Rangers
Jun 13, 1989
How good did Ryan McDonagh look against Team Slovakia? His exceptional skating ability makes him stand out even more on the wider international ice and I'd look to him to have a strong game facing off against the dynamic Russian offense. USA would be foolish if they try to get into a shootout with Russia, the game is likely going to be won with strong defensive and physical play and McDonagh will be right in the thick of it matching up against Russia's most lethal players. He's going to have his hands full this morning while we're all eating our bacon and Eggo waffles.
Enjoy today's games. Let's go Hockey! LET'S GO USA!!!