USA vs. Canada

It’s a big day in Vancouver, as the United States faces Canada at 4:40 p.m. Pacific time. Other games are Russia vs. Czech Republic at noon and Sweden vs. Finland at 9 p.m.

Today is the final day of preliminary-round play. The top four teams earn a bye to the quarterfinals, and if play was already over now, those four teams would be Finland, USA, Czech Republic and Sweden. Of course, their respective opponents can play themselves into byes today, so it should be a very interesting day. Qualification games — for those teams that didn’t earn a bye — will be Tuesday, with the quarterfinals on Wednesday.

Canada’s youngest player, Drew Doughty, continues to shine. Doughty is expected to partner with Duncan Keith today, and coach Mike Babcock said, “I think the steadiest guy may have been (Shea) Weber and I think (Drew) Doughty and (Duncan) Keith really picked up their games last game because they relaxed more and started playing and skating. It appears to me that the guys that can really skate have been the best.”

Finally…

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