As the Olympic men’s hockey tournament moves on to the semifinal round Friday, six of the seven Ducks who departed for Sochi nine days ago still have visions of gold.
Defenseman Cam Fowler and Team USA play Team Canada and its Ducks’ stars Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry in a rematch of the overtime gold-medal game of 2010, while Finland, with veteran forward Teemu Selanne and rookie defenseman Sami Vatanen, upset Russia on Wednesday to advance to a meeting with top-seeded Sweden, which has forward Jakob Silfverberg.
“I’m really proud of the way our guys have played,” Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau said Wednesday in Anaheim as the partial Ducks resumed practice with their next game coming Feb. 28 vs. USA shootout hero T.J. Oshie and the St. Louis Blues at Honda Center.
The only eliminated Duck, goalie Jonas Hiller, posted two shutouts for Switzerland.
Perry and Getzlaf combined for eight of Canada’s staggering 57 shots on goal Wednesday in a 2-1 victory over Latvia that was clinched by Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber’s third-period goal.
“Getzlaf and Perry were the two best players on the ice today,” Boudreau said.
Selanne had a goal and assist in Finland’s 3-1 elimination of host Russia and its star Alexander Ovechkin.
“My role in Anaheim has gotten smaller and smaller and I knew I was going to play on the first line here, so that has really kept me going,” Selanne, 43, said after the win. “I’m enjoying every second of it.”
Fowler was plus-one in his time on the ice in the 5-2 victory over the Czech Republic after scoring a goal against Russia.
The Ducks lead the NHL in points.
“Cam is really showing himself well and getting rave reviews,” Boudreau said. “We’ve got some good players, and a lot of them are playing in the Olympics.”