VANCOUVER — Now it's Canada vs. Russia in the men's hockey game that was widely anticipated. Only not now.
The Flames' Jarome Iginla scored two goals as a revived Canada beat Germany 8-2 on Tuesday, setting up a superpower showdown against Russia in the quarterfinals today, or four days sooner than predicted for a matchup that seems better suited for the gold-medal game.
"I don't think it's take it easy (Tuesday night)," goalie Roberto Luongo said. "We're going to have a nice meal, but once we get back to the village, we start focusing on Russia. It's only 24 hours away."
The Predators' Shea Weber had a goal that left scorch marks in the net, leading to a three-goal second period in a qualification game Canada didn't expect to be playing. Russia had two days off after winning its group and will be better rested than Canada.
Canada changed goaltenders, from the Devils' Martin Brodeur to the hometown Canucks' Roberto Luongo, after being exiled to a qualification game by its 5-3 loss to the United States on Sunday. The switch hardly mattered; offense-thin Germany had few good scoring chances until the game got out of hand.
Luongo also will start against Russia.
The change that made a difference was shifting the Hurricanes' Eric Staal and Iginla onto Sidney Crosby's line, where Iginla scored three goals against Norway in the opener.
Iginla scored two goals in slightly more than five minutes to make it 4-0 as Canada used its scoring depth and talent to take control against Germany, which was held to five goals while losing all four of its games in Vancouver.
The Penguins' Crosby also scored, Staal had three assists and the Sharks' Joe Thornton — nicknamed "No Show Joe" for disappearing in Canada's first three games — scored in the first period.
There were plenty of holes in Germany's defense for Canada that won't be there against Russia.
"You don't want to play (Russia) in the quarterfinals because it means your record isn't as good," Iginla said. "But it could definitely be good for us. I think it's good for our whole team. Each game, you feel more comfortable."
First Period—1, Canada, Joe Thornton (Dany Heatley, Duncan Keith), 10:13. Penalties—Christopher Schmidt, Germany (High Sticking), 5:29.
Second Period—2, Canada, Shea Weber (Mike Richards), 2:32. 3, Canada, Jarome Iginla (Drew Doughty, Eric Staal), 3:41 (pp). 4, Canada, Jarome Iginla (Eric Staal, Dan Boyle), 8:50. 5, Germany, Marcel Goc (Christopher Schmidt, Marcel Muller), 16:34. Penalties—Dennis Seidenberg, Germany (Slashing), 3:26; Dany Heatley, Canada (Cross-Checking), 4:15; Scott Niedermayer, Canada (tripping), 6:34; Alexander Sulzer, Germany (Hooking), 11:23.
Third Period—6, Canada, Sidney Crosby (Eric Staal, Duncan Keith), 1:10. 7, Canada, Mike Richards (Brenden Morrow, Jonathan Toews), 6:41. 8, Canada, Scott Niedermayer (unassisted), 11:22. 9, Canada, Rick Nash (Chris Pronger), 16:28. 10, Germany, Manuel Klinge (Marcel Muller, Kai Hospelt), 18:58. Penalties—Scott Niedermayer, Canada (Hooking), 9:03.
Missed Penalty Shot—Sidney Crosby, Canada, second. Shots on Goal—Canada 14-11-14—39. Germany 4-10-9—23. Goalies—Canada, Roberto Luongo. Germany, Thomas Greiss.
Switzerland 3, Belarus 2, SO: Don't be fooled by Switzerland's struggle against Belarus. The Swiss are ready for another shot at the top-ranked Americans. "We're coming at an all-NHL team for the third time. We feel comfortable," Swiss coach Ralph Krueger said after his team's tighter-than-expected win to make the quarterfinals.
The United States beat the Swiss 3-1 in the Olympic opener a week ago.
"It's more about being less timid and getting into their faces," Krueger said. "I see them as the most physical-playing team in the tournament. We need to bring an absolutely perfect team game to even have a chance."
Swiss goalie Jonas Hiller said the pressure will be on the Americans, especially in the game after their win over Canada.
"The longer the game goes on, the tighter the score, the better it is for us," Hiller said.
A day after their general manager, Brian Burke, sternly — and publicly — voiced his discontent with how the Americans were playing, they said they were thoroughly prepared to face Switzerland.
"I think Burkie wants to keep us where we need to be, which is appropriately paranoid," goalie Ryan Miller said.
|Switzerland wins shootout 2-1|
|Switzerland wins shootout 2-1|
First Period—1, Belarus, Aleksei Kalyuzhny (Viktor Kostiuchenok), 0:59. 2, Switzerland, Julien Sprunger (Roman Wick, Martin Pluss), 12:25 (pp). Penalties—Romano Lemm, Switzerland (Hooking), 10:15; Aleksei Kalyuzhny, Belarus (Holding), 11:13.
Second Period—3, Switzerland, Hnat Domenichelli (Mark Streit, Severin Blindenbacher), 7:07 (pp). 4, Belarus, Konstantin Zakharov (Aleksei Ugarov, Nikolai Stasenko), 15:42 (pp). Penalties—Aleksei Ugarov, Belarus (tripping), 0:21; Sergei Demagin, Belarus (Holding), 6:46; Sandy Jeannin, Switzerland (Delaying the Game), 9:32; Mathias Seger, Switzerland (Holding), 14:55.
Third Period—No scoring. Penalties—Severin Blindenbacher, Switzerland (Holding), 3:14.
Overtime—No scoring. Penalties—Roman Wick, Switzerland (tripping), 3:30.
Shootout—Switzerland 2 (Thomas Deruns G, Romano Lemm G, Ivo Ruthemann NG), Belarus 1 (Oleg Antonenko NG, Dmitri Meleshko G, Sergei Kostitsyn NG). Shots on Goal—Switzerland 16-10-11-5-1—43. Belarus 7-4-8-3-0—22. Goalies—Switzerland, Jonas Hiller. Belarus, Andrei Mezin.
|Playoff qualifiers||Quarterfinals||Semifinals||Gold medal||Semifinals||Quarterfinals||Playoff qualifiers|
|1. United States||2. Sweden|
|8. Switzerland 3||3 p.m., Ch. 8||midnight, CNBC||7. Slovakia|
|9. Belarus 2 (SO)||TBD||3:15 p.m., Ch. 8||TBD||10. Norway|
|4. Finland||3. Russia|
|5. Czech Republic 3||10 p.m., CNBC||7:30 p.m., CNBC||6. Canada 8|
|5. Czech Republic||6. Canada|
|12. Latvia 2 OT||11. Germany 2|
|10 p.m., MSNBC|