Slovenia comes back to stun US in men's hockey, 3-2

Postado Fevereiro 15, 2018

That uncertainty remains present, as Team USA fell 3-2 to unheralded Slovenia in overtime.

Many were wondering what kind of impact the NHL's decision not to send players to the Games would have on the Olympic tournament.

Tony Granato, a former assistant coach of the Red Wings, who is how head coach at Wisconsin, and Chris Chelios, who is now an assistant coach in Detroit, are two of the United States coaches. Here's how it all shook out and what we've learned from Team USA's meltdown loss to Slovenia.

Two of their most recognizable players with some of the most NHL experience is looking at these Games as a springboard to get back in the league.

Greenway, of Boston College and an National Hockey League draft pick of the Wild, became the first African-American to play for the United States in the Olympics.

The Americans were in ideal shape through two periods, as Brian O'Neill gave them a 1-0 lead in the first, and Minnesota Wild forward prospect Jordan Greenway made it 2-0 in the second.

The American's loss was definitely a bad one, but OAR getting dropped by Slovakia - in regulation no less - is even more of a mind-bender. "It's a good team, I'll give them credit".

Could another dark horse U.S. Men's hockey team rise up and beat the Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation, now the favourite to win gold, or their archrival Team Canada, the second-choice in the betting markets?

The U.S. now sits in third place in Group B with one point to their name. In their first appearance in Sochi, Slovenia made it to the quarter finals, where they were defeated by Sweden. Jan Urbas cut Team USA's lead in the third period six minutes into the frame, signaling that this game wasn't as finished as people thought.

That led to an intense finish, with the Americans clinging to a one-goal lead and fending off Slovenia's advances until there was just 1:37 left to play, when Jan Mursak - a former Detroit Red Wings left wing - knotted things up with a score.

So, what went wrong for Team USA? Slovenia then scored the game-winning goal in overtime.

While Granato's words sound great in theory, the United States did not match Slovenia's tempo in the third period.

Ceresnak capitalized on delay of a game penalty taken by Ivan Telegin, unleashing a slap shot from the point that beat goaltender Vasili Koshechkin to his left with just over 10 minutes to play.

Slovenia came from two goals down in the third period to beat the United States 3-2 in overtime on Wednesday in the opening round of the men's Olympic hockey tournament.

If the USA can bounce back and take care of Slovakia in regulation like many people think they should be able to, it will set up for a US versus OAR battle in the final preliminary round game to decide which team will move on to the elimination rounds.

The United States will play Slovakia on Thursday evening at 10:10 p.m. ET in a game that is now absolutely a must win for the Americans to keep their hopes of a medal alive.