Rambler's Top100

Сборная России по хоккею:::Пресса

начало новости история сезон турниры фото видео ссылки
статьи интервью игроки тренеры матчи on-line гостевая форум

Кубок Мира по хоккею 1996 года


U.S. Upends Russia
By Michael Dell, editor-on-chief
Continuing to play a fast-paced, physical brand of hockey, Team USA pounded Russia 5-2 in front of a pro-Russian crowd at the Corel Centre in Ottawa to earn the right to take on Team Canada in a best-of-three series for the World Cup Championship. Brett Hull led the way for the Americans with two goals, while Pat LaFontaine, Tony Amonte, and Mathieu Schneider each added a goal.

LaFontaine started things early, converting a Joel Otto pass on a 2-on-1 into a 1-0 lead just 26 seconds into the game. The play started when Vladimir Malakhov tried the always dangerous cross- ice pass in the neutral zone. Adam Deadmarsh broke up the play and quickly moved the puck to Otto for the counterattack. Earlier in the tournament the U.S. defeated Russia 5-2 in a preliminary round game. During that contest the Americans also scored exactly 26 seconds into the game... that is some wild, wild stuff.

While the early goal had the U.S. off and running, the Russians still managed to generate some quality chances. The best of which came on a nice play between Alexander Mogilny and Sergei Nemchinov. Mogilny drove down the right wing and floated a beautiful pass to Nemchinov, who was fighting off a Doug Weight check while coming late down the slot. Mike Richter followed the pass across the front of the crease and made a dazzling right pad save on Nemchinov's redirection. The save set the tone for another superb outing by the New York Ranger netminder.

With Richter keeping the Russians off the board, the U.S. took advantage of a late power play to grab a 2-0 lead. Weight started the play along the right wing boards, finding Kevin Hatcher open at the center point. Hatcher uncorked a heavy drive towards the net that was deflected by Hull in front. Russian goalie Andrei Trefilov was able to make the first save, but he could not recover in time to stop Hull from backhanding home the rebound. The goal came with just 15 seconds remaining in the period. Those late goals will kill ya...

The Russians got back into the game in the second, despite letting two early power plays slip through their fingers. Taking advantage of a 3-on-1 break, Sergei Berezin, the only member of the Russian team not yet in the NHL, came down the right side and wristed a shot over Richter's catching glove to make the game 2-1 at the 9:06 mark.

What happened next was easily the turning point of the game. With the Russians still buzzing from their first goal, the Americans came back strong to retake their two-goal lead just 55 seconds later. Tony Amonte crossed the Russian line and left the puck for teammate Bryan Smolinski. With Amonte and John LeClair barreling to the net, Smolinski let a wrist shot go from out high on the right wing. Screened by LeClair, Trefilov never saw Amonte knock the shot down in front. By the time the Russian netminder caught up with the play, Amonte had already controlled the bouncing puck with his skate and stuffed it into the goal for the 3-1 lead.

Less than five minutes later, Hull put the game away with his second goal of the game. This time the Golden Brett connected while short-handed, taking a nifty drop pass from Weight at the bottom of the right wing circle and rifling a shot between Trefilov's pads.

The 4-1 lead would have seemed a little less insurmountable had it not been for a play by Derian Hatcher late in the second period. The younger Hatcher brother had Richter's back on a close-in shot from Andrei Nikolishin, stopping the puck with his stick just before it crossed the goal line and stuffing it back under Richter for a faceoff. This was just another stellar play by Hatcher, who often gets overlooked on the U.S. blue line.

The Russians picked up the tempo in the third period, catching the U.S. back on its heels. Sergei Zubov created some excitement by wristing a shot past Richter just two minutes into the final frame, but that's as close as the game would get. Mathieu Schneider dashed any hopes for a late comeback by the Russians when he stole the puck inside the U.S. line and lugged it the whole way up the right side to score an unassisted goal with just over six minutes remaining in the game.

The Russians knew going in that their only real chance to win was to convert their power play chances. Crumbling under the pressure, the Russian power play went 0-for-8 while also allowing a short-handed goal. In a single-game elimination, special teams can be the difference between winning and losing. The Russian power play lost this game.

It sounds like a broken record, but it was another impressive showing for Team USA. The Americans followed their game plan perfectly in once again frustrating the Russians. Big, strong, and fast, it's hard to imagine this team losing two out of their next three games.

Canada has always been the big brother to the U.S. in international hockey, often knocking them down and writing "mucus" on their foreheads. Now not only do the Americans have the chance to play Canada in the World Cup Finals for international bragging rights, they also have a great chance of winning. This is easily the best American team in history. The men in red, white, and blue finally have the size and strength to battle the Canadians physically, with guys like Keith Tkachuk, John LeClair, and Bill Guerin leading the way. When the two clubs met in the opening round, the game was only 20 seconds old before things got ugly. With the great goaltending on both teams, this series could feature more fights than goals. Get the Colt 45 chilled, bust open the pretzels, wake the kids, call Grandma... this series is going to be a good one.

Источник - "Canadian Press"





Rambler's Top100
Рейтинг TopSport


Hosted by uCoz