MOSCOW – Team USA will play for the bronze medal here today against host Russia with opening faceoff set for 4:15 p.m. (9:15 a.m. ET). The game will be live streamed in the U.S. on NBC Sports Live Extra. There is no television coverage.
The game comes some 17 hours after the U.S. lost a heart-breaking 4-3 decision to Canada in the semifinals of the tournament. Russia dropped a 3-1 decision to Finland in the early semifinal yesterday.
Canada coach Bill Peters had high praises for Team USA following last night’s game and singled out the U.S. as the tournament’s most improved team. The U.S. will look to finish on a high note and bring a medal home to the nation for the second straight year and third time in four years.
And bringing home a medal has not been an easy task in the world championship for the U.S., with four medals over the last 50 years.
“This group has a lot of character and some guys that were in this exact position last year,” said John Hynes, head coach of Team USA. “We’ll be ready to go.”
The "some guys" Hynes is referring to are Matt Hendricks, Connor Murphy, Brock Nelson and Dylan Larkin, the four players that were part of the 2015 squad that lost to Russia, 4-0, in the semifinals and rebounded for a 3-0 victory over host Czech Republic in the bronze medal game the next day.
Team USA is 4-3 in seven previous bronze medal games. It has met Russia once in a bronze medal game, that on May 4, 1996, when Brian Rolston scored shorthanded at 4:48 of overtime with an assist from Joe Sacco to give the U.S. a 4-3 win and the bronze medal in Vienna.
The U.S. and Russia have met 14 previous times in the world championship with Russia holding a slim advantage in the all-time series with (seven wins to six for the U.S. with one tie). The teams met twice in last year’s world championship with the U.S. earning a 4-2 win in the preliminary round and Russia downing Team USA by a 4-0 count in the semifinals.
NOTES: A pair youngsters lead the U.S. in points with 18-year-old Auston Matthews (6-3—9) and 19-year-old Dylan Larkin (2-7—9) tied atop the leader board … Ben Smith will be inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame this morning here in Moscow. He was the head coach of three U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Teams, including the 1998 squad that captured the first-ever gold medal awarded in women’s ice hockey in the Olympic Winter Games. Smith was also an assistant coach for the 1988 U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team ... Regardless of the outcome of today's game, the U.S. will finish in the top four in the world championship for the third time in the last four years, a stretch that has been equalled only once before in the history of the country (1931-34).
|May 3||Finland (exhibition)||L, 2-3 OT|
|May 6||Canada||L, 1-5|
|May 7||Belarus||W, 6-3|
|May 9||Finland||L, 2-3|
|May 12||France||W, 4-0|
|May 13||Hungary||W, 5-1|
|May 15||Germany||L, 2-3|
|May 17||Slovakia||L, 2-3 OT|
|May 19||Czech Republic (quarterfinal)||W, 2-1 SO|
Bronze Medal Game
Tag(s): 2016 World Championship