February 19, 2014 6:21 pm

Lots of family pride for Kings’ biggest Latvia fan

Though Jordan Nolan spent part of his Olympic break on vacation, there was time set aside to watch his father coach the Latvian national team to a quarterfinal berth at the 2014 Sochi Games. Under Ted Nolan, Latvia defeated Switzerland 3-1 in the qualification round before falling 2-1 to Canada in a game that was tied with under 10 minutes to play in the third period. The win over Switzerland was Latvia’s first Olympic victory since a win over Ukraine in the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.

Nolan split time watching the games on his computer and at home, where he viewed the upset win over Switzerland and today’s one-goal loss to Canada.

“That Swiss game – [Latvia] got out to a two-goal lead. [I was] pretty nervous watching it. Switzerland is a good team, and my dad’s team plays a North American style. I was pretty much sitting on the edge of my seat watching the whole game, and I’m just very proud he won that game. It’s not too often that you get to play Canada in the Olympics. The night before I was hoping that he wouldn’t get blown out too bad, and now after the game you’re saying ‘Aw, they had a chance to win that,’ so it’s pretty unbelievable, and we’re all pretty proud of him.”

Jordan Nolan, on watching Latvia-Canada:
Canada’s won lots of gold medals, lots of championships, and this is my dad’s first time coaching in the Olympics or coaching for a national team. So you definitely want to see him do well, and definitely, my family, we’re all rooting for him even though we’re Canadians. They did well. They came close to the very end, and we’re all proud of him.

Jordan Nolan, on how he communicated with his father during the Olympics:
Not too often. We’re [separated] by a big time change. We sent some emails, and he showed me pictures of it over there, and I showed him pictures of my vacation. We’re definitely communicating. I wished him good luck for the Swiss game and the Canadian game, and hopefully it helped him a bit.

Jordan Nolan, on any pride in watching Slovenia’s medal campaign:
Definitely. Those teams like Latvia and Slovenia and all those small teams – people overlook lots of ‘em. You watch on TSN or NHL, Canada was preparing for the Swiss in the quarterfinals, and you never know. Latvia comes back and wins that hockey game. Then, before the Canada game, they were saying Latvia doesn’t have a chance in that game. You never know what’s going to happen. They came close and almost finished it off.

Martin Rose / Getty Images Sport

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