Sports has a special way of capturing your emotions. It can suck you in. It can bring you to the edge of your seat. It can make you nervous, angry, joyous, and worn out all in a matter of minutes. It can bring a nation together and to its feet. Saturday morning that is exactly what happened.
Ths US Mens hockey team’s win over Russia will certainly never be confused with the Miracle on Ice in 1980. It may not have even been as great as Rocky taking down Drago and ending the Cold War. But this was still a victory of great proportions.
The Russian team was one of the favorites heading in to the Olympics. Not to mention, they were playing on their home soil. They met the gritty Americans on Saturday. Heading in to the matchup, this was pegged as the best group matchup we would see. It lived up to its billing.
The play went back and forth. The Americans would throw a punch, the Russians would counter. One team would be on the ropes and looking down and out before finding its way. The Russians had 4 of the top 5 players in this game on there squad. The one guy they didn’t have which would prove to be the difference maker- Jonathan Quick.
The Russians would score evening the game at 2 with less than 10 minutes left in the 3rd. They scored what looked to be a potential game winner. However, it was disallowed due to an international rule. The Russians continued to carry the play for the rest of the 3rd and most of overtime. Each time they were met by Jonathan Quick.
The game would go to a shootout. America was formally introduced to TJ Oshie. The International rule states that a shooter can shoot as many times after the first 3 have gone. TJ Oshie continued to shoot and shoot and shoot for the Americans. And he continued to score and score and score. He went 4 for 6 in the shootout as well scoring on must makes and eventually the game winner.
To beat the Russians on their ice in front of their people made it that much sweeter. The impact and excitement of this game was easily judged. My wife who could care less was into it. I received texts from family and friends who wouldn’t know offsides was part of hockey. Social media blew up with reaction.
As only sports can, it sucked us in. It brought us to the edge of our seat. We felt nervousness, anger, and joy all in a matter of minutes. It brought our nation together. Saturday morning happened and it will never be confused with 1980. In the midst of the emotion we realized we didn’t need a miracle when we had Quick and Oshie
In case you want to relive the nation reaction see below: