Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 02/19/14 at 09:58 AM ET
from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,
One of the keys to the USA's unbeaten record heading into Wednesday's quarterfinal game against the Czech Republic has been its devilish playing style. The players are playing like the fire down below.
RUSSIA: Radulov leads victory against Norway
Centers David Backes and Ryan Kesler have been monstrous forces. U.S. coach Dan Bylsma wanted this team to be hard to play against, and Backes and Kesler have stormed around the ice like human tornadoes.
On one shift against Russia, Backes rubbed out Evgeni Malkin and Ovechkin with clean legal hits.
Bear wrestling seems easier than facing Kesler in this tournament. He has hit, bumped or growled at every opponent he has faced in the USA's first three games.
from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,
Czech and Philadelphia Flyers winger Jakub Voracek had nothing but praise for the U.S. "They're the best team in the tournament, the way they're playing," he said.
"We've got to make sure we get our power play going, like we did [Tuesday], because special teams is going to be huge. We've got to skate for 60 minutes because they're a very fast team. We've got to make sure we are ready because it's going to be tough."
Voracek acknowledged the Czechs tired in the third period Tuesday, and they will have only a day's recovery time before they face the speedy U.S. That could wear them down.
But Hemsky said he and his teammates won't feel any pressure.
"We have nothing to lose," he said. "The U.S. are a great team. They have a young team and a lot of great players that can score," he said. "They are a fast team and they are playing great all tournament.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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