Thursday, February 22, 2018
Sports

Olympic men's hockey preview

Details, details

A day after saying not much attention should be paid to Canada's line combinations at its first practice, coach Mike Babcock of the Red Wings used the same combinations for the second practice Tuesday. That means the extra players again were the Lightning's Marty St. Louis (right) and the Avalanche's Matt Duchene at forward, and the Canucks' Dan Hamhuis and the Canadiens' P.K. Subban on defense. To put it another way, one of the extras led the NHL in scoring last season (St. Louis) and another won the Norris Trophy as top defenseman (Subban). Canada opens Thursday vs. Norway. "If I don't dress, I don't dress," St. Louis said after the first practice. "I don't control that. I'm going to control what I do on the ice. My goal is to be there in the last game."

A face only a grandmother could loathe

If Sweden comes away with a medal, one player who won't be thanking his family is Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom. His 84-year-old grandmother, Britt, told the Swedish newspaper Ostersund-Posten her grandson "will make a fool of himself" in the tournament. "He has played so poorly. For a long time," she says of Nicklas, who has 56 points (11 goals) this season in Washington. Britt isn't a fan of the rest of the Swedish team, either: "On the whole, they've got no game." Swedish teammate Daniel Sedin of the Canucks came to Nicklas' defense. "(Grandma) need not be worried. It's fun to play with Nicklas," he told the newspaper Sportbladet. Not wanting to make his family gatherings any more awkward, Nicklas said he wouldn't comment on his gram. "I stay away from those. … Sorry."

Solidarity, for now

The entire Russian team — including coaches and federation head/goalie great Vladislav Tretiak — showed up at a news conference attended by more than 400 people Tuesday. It wanted to show solidarity two days before starting a competition that will be considered a failure if it doesn't win gold. "We know that we enjoy a lot of support here, but we also know that we have a lot of responsibility, a lot to answer for," Tretiak said. Russia has not won gold since 1992, when the Unified Team won shortly after the end of the Soviet Union. Its underwhelming efforts in recent international events have brought criticism that players from the NHL and the Russia-based KHL have had trouble forming a cohesive team. The previous day, Russian and Capitals star Alex Ovechkin (left) was asked to describe what a gold medal might mean to Russia. "(It) will cost $50 billion, probably," he said, grinning, quoting the amount that the government spent on the Games.

Number of the day

5 Players in the 12-team competition older than 40: the Ducks' Teemu Selanne, 43, of Finland; former NHL player Petr Nedved, 42, and the Devils' Jaromir Jagr, 42 on Saturday, of the Czech Republic; the Red Wings' Daniel Alfredsson, 41, of Sweden; and former NHLer Sandis Ozolinsh, 41, of Latvia. Selanne will tie an Olympic hockey record by playing in his sixth tourney when he faces Austria on Thursday.

Coy Bylsma

U.S. coach Dan Bylsma of the Penguins hinted he has decided who will start in goal in the opener against Slovakia on Thursday.

He said he had narrowed his options from three to two: the Sabres' Ryan Miller, the MVP of the 2010 tournament for the silver medalists, and the Kings' Jonathan Quick.

"I'm not going to tell you if I want to see both of them play or not," Bylsma said.

The odd man out is the Red Wings' Jimmy Howard.

Compiled from Times wires, nhl.com.

Comments
Honeywell walks off mound with injury, Rays for now say it’s a forearm strain

Honeywell walks off mound with injury, Rays for now say it’s a forearm strain

UPDATE, 3:06: GM Erik Neander said the Rays medical team is continuing to evaluate Honeywell, and may not have an update for several days."There are times where something like this can happen and once you get your opinions from your medical people an...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Lightning not planning to trade from current roster

Lightning not planning to trade from current roster

Everyone is wondering what the Lightning might do by Monday's trade deadline.Will they go after the big fish in the Senators' superstar defenseman Erik Karlsson? Would Tampa Bay settle for likely cheaper depth signings like rental defenseman Mike Gre...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Police: DeSean Jackson’s former Eagles teammate drove truck found wrecked with bullets, marijuana inside

Police: DeSean Jackson’s former Eagles teammate drove truck found wrecked with bullets, marijuana inside

TAMPA  — With no witnesses and no video evidence, Tampa Police have stopped investigating a case from Christmas Eve that had a truck belonging to Bucs receiver DeSean Jackson found wrecked and abandoned in a mall parking lot with hollow-po...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays find taker for Corey Dickerson, get Daniel Hudson, prospect from Pirates

Rays find taker for Corey Dickerson, get Daniel Hudson, prospect from Pirates

The Rays found a taker for OF/DH Corey Dickerson, trading him Thursday to the Pirates for veteran reliever Daniel Hudson, minor-league INF Tristan Gray and $1-million cash.Hudson, 30, will compete for a spot in the Rays bullpen, coming off a rou...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Gators’ Larry Scott on Miami, ‘that other school down south’

Gators’ Larry Scott on Miami, ‘that other school down south’

GAINESVILLE — Tight ends coach Larry Scott hasn't even been with the Gators for a month, but he already understands the state's rivalries well.The former Miami interim coach referred to his old program as "that other school down south" during h...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Riverview to host Angela Slater softball tournament this weekend

Riverview to host Angela Slater softball tournament this weekend

Riverview High will host the inaugural Angela Slater Kick-Off Softball Classic, a 16-team tournament that starts Thursday and ends Saturday.The tournament is named in honor of the former Sharks softball coach who died in 2016 after a year-long battle...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Lindsey Vonn scatters grandfather’s ashes near downhill course

Lindsey Vonn scatters grandfather’s ashes near downhill course

JEONGSEON, South Korea — Lindsey Vonn came to South Korea with the goal of taking home an Olympic medal and leaving something even more special behind. She did both. The American ski great said Thursday she recently scattered some of the ashe...
Updated: 3 hours ago
USA women’s hockey gives us a night to remember

USA women’s hockey gives us a night to remember

Our team.They're Americans, yes. But they are more than that.They're one of us. Adopted Floridians. Honorary members of Tampa Bay.And they gave us the signature moment of the Winter Olympics.USA! USA! USA!In the greatest moment in American hockey sin...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Florida Gators’ Malik Davis ‘coming along well’ in knee rehab

Florida Gators’ Malik Davis ‘coming along well’ in knee rehab

GAINESVILLE — Former Jesuit High star Malik Davis is "coming along well" from knee surgery, but the Gators still aren't ready to talk about when he'll be fully available to the team."I don't know right now," running backs coach Greg Knox said T...
Updated: 3 hours ago
For a change, USF football staff remains the same

For a change, USF football staff remains the same

When the 2018 Bulls hit the Morsani Complex fields March 5 for their inaugural spring practice, they'll be greeted by a stabilizing force of sorts.Familiar faces, all around.For the first time since 2011, USF will enter the season with the same coach...
Updated: 5 hours ago