The Games may continue. Anze has arrived:
— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) February 10, 2014
There’s a great New York Times write-up of Matjaz and Anze Kopitar, and the state of hockey in Slovenia.
As a teenager, Kopitar realized there was a wider world to conquer. Slovenia hosted an international youth tournament, attracting scouts who came to see the top developing talent from Russia, Finland, Sweden and the Czech Republic. They discovered, as Kopitar recalled, “this kid from Slovenia who was playing pretty good.”
Kopitar received an offer to play on a junior team in Sweden. After consulting with his family, he left home reluctantly in 2004, without finishing high school, to pursue a career in hockey. He was 16.
“We just knew the competition at home was not going to be good enough,” Kopitar said. “It seems easy now. It didn’t seem easy then. I literally thought I was going to the other side of the world.”
So you may have heard that Jeff Carter is skating on Sidney Crosby’s line, opposite Chris Kunitz. Shoot, Jeff, shoot!
Jeff Carter on Sidney Crosby’s right wing today. Babcock says of Carter, “If he passes it back to Sid, he can’t play with him.” — Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) February 10, 2014
Speaking of line combinations, John Vogl of the Buffalo News compiled the forward alignments for the United States, Canada, Sweden and Russia. I had always kind of hoped Dustin Brown would skate on a CAPTAIN AMERICA line with David Backes and Ryan Callahan, but I guess working opposite Patrick Kane on Ryan Kesler’s line isn’t so bad. Say, do Brown and Kesler have any type of history?
A Jonathan Quick sighting:
Jonathan Quick hard at work during Team USA practice in Sochi today. pic.twitter.com/ad3Oyv3DYv
— Greg Beacham (@gregbeacham) February 10, 2014
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) February 10, 2014
Via Brian Stubits of CBS’ Eye on Olympics blog, the United States worked with the following groups earlier today:
James van Riemsdyk – Joe Pavelski – Phil Kessel
Zach Parise – David Backes – T.J. Oshie
Dustin Brown – Ryan Kesler – Patrick Kane
Ryan Callahan – Paul Stastny – Max Pacioretty Extras: Derek Stepan, Blake Wheeler
As for the defense, Drew Doughty has been paired with Marc-Edouard Vlasic of the San Jo- HEY DID YOU HEAR THAT PK SUBBAN ISN’T IN CANADA’S TOP SIX? ::lights torch:: ::sharpens pitchfork::
blueline looked like Keith/Weber (Yikes), Vlasic/Doughty, Pietrangelo/Bouwmeester and Subban/Hamhuis — Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) February 10, 2014
Good luck, Norway.
The letters “I” and “Y” in the English translation of Russian are practically interchangeable, and the hosts won’t take any spelling guidance from the Los Angeles Kings, thank you very much:
LA Kings fans: Slava Voynov’s jersey for Team Russia uses the Voinov spelling of his last name. The pride of Siberia is still No. 26. — Greg Beacham (@gregbeacham) February 10, 2014
Markov-Voynov a pairing, cue up the LA Kings rumours.
— Андрей Беркшайр (@AndrewBerkshire) February 10, 2014
No, don’t cue up those rumors! Please don’t cue up those rumors.
There’s lots of good video here. First a three-part FOX Sports West table discussion featuring Patrick O’Neal, Daryl Evans, Jim Fox and Sean O’Donnell:
And plenty of NHL Live Olympic coverage: