Olympics men's hockey: OAR captures gold with OT victory

Feb 26, 2018, 01:43
Olympics men's hockey: OAR captures gold with OT victory

Kirill Kaprizov scored the power-play goal that will be forever remembered in Russian hockey history 9:40 into the extra period, producing the only Russian men's gold at the Pyeongchang Games. "It feels good to do something like that for the country".

Such an entertaining final may have at least redeemed a men's tournament that was overshadowed for some by the political overtones of the Korean women's unified team and by the excitement of the United States beating rival Canada for the women's gold medal.

"You play for your country; it is more important", Russian captain Pavel Datsyuk said. "Now I have no dream", he told the media after the event, via The Herald Sun.

The win gives OAR their second gold of the Pyeongchang Games and 17th medal overall.

The IOC formally banned Team Russia in December over a doping scheme at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, but invited 168 athletes to compete under the OAR name. More than 200 fans that cheered for the team all tournament sang the Russian anthem, too, but the players did them one better and bellowed the anthem over the top of the Olympic anthem as the Olympic flag rose to the rafters.

The opening stages of overtime had been cagey before Kaprizov's victor, which came from a powerplay after Germany's Patrick Reimer had conceded a penalty for high sticking.

"It was the higher powers from above who granted us these medals", Russia's Andrei Zubarev said.

It started when Yannic Seidenberg chose to dump the puck in, relinquishing possession to the Olympics Athletes from Russian Federation. "It took me nearly 30 years but it feels really good". The Canadians were the overwhelming pre-Olympics favourites to win the gold medal.

The Germans owned the first period outplaying Russia, but a turnover with 10 seconds left in the first period resulted in a Russian goal.

Even as Fasel used Germany's run to the final to say nobody in that country cares that the National Hockey League wasn't there, coach Marco Sturm was lamenting their absence.

With Germany's Patrick Reimer off for high sticking midway through the extra period, the Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation went on a four-on-three man advantage and Kaprizov one-timed a pass from Nikita Gusev past German goaltender Danny aus den Birken.

"We all thought we would be sitting at home watching that final on the couch at home, but here we are", Sturm said.

With 0.5 seconds remaining in the first period, Russian Vyacheslav Voynov scored the first point of the match after an ambitious shot that made it past German goaltender Danny aus den Birken.

"It was the craziest game ever", Ilya Kovalchuk said.

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