Sochi Olympics Ice Hockey Men

Oshie says it’s all been ‘very surreal’

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SOCHI, Russia — T.J. Oshie was already a pretty famous guy, what with being an NHL star and all. But he’s never experienced the kind of fame that last night’s shootout heroics versus Russia brought on.

“It was very surreal,” Oshie said Sunday following the United States’ 5-1 victory over Slovenia. “I’m very humbled by it. It was a crazy night for me.”

And you get the feeling all that “crazy” — which even included a congratulatory tweet from the White House — has been about enough for the 27-year-old.

“A lot of the focus has been on me, but yesterday was a good team win, and I had a lot of help out of [Jonathan Quick] back there behind me,” he said. “It’s fun, but we’ve got bigger things to worry about now.”

Indeed, they do. The U.S. finished preliminary play undefeated. Next stop is the quarterfinals, where it’s win or go home.

“I think we have to rest,” said Oshie. “A lot of these guys are playing big minutes.”

Senators select Kyle Turris as alternate captain

Chris Neil Kyle Turris Dustin Tokarski
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Kyle Turris is gearing up for his fifth season with the Ottawa Senators, but this campaign will be a little different.

Ottawa announced that Turris will be joining Chris Neil as one of the team’s alternate captains. Turris is assuming that role from Chris Phillips as the 37-year-old defenseman remains out indefinitely due to a back injury.

Since being acquired from the then Phoenix Coyotes in 2011, Turris has established himself as one of Ottawa’s top forwards. He tied for second in the team’s scoring race last season with 64 points in 82 contests and gelled with rookie linemate Mark Stone.

With the Senators favoring a youth movement, Turris actually stands out as one of the Senators’ more experienced players at the age of 26. He’s also set to play a big role with the Senators for years to come as he’s locked to an affordable $3.5 million annual cap hit through 2017-18.

Meanwhile defenseman Erik Karlsson is getting ready for his second season as the team’s captain.

Another Sabre hurt: Gionta (lower body) day-to-day

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On the eve of their season opener, the Buffalo Sabres got another bit of bad health news.

Captain Brian Gionta missed practice and is day-to-day with a lower-body injury, per head coach Dan Bylsma. The ailment puts the 36-year-old’s availability for Thursday’s game against Ottawa in jeopardy.

The ailment also puts Gionta alongside a slew of hurting Sabres. Defensemen Zach Bogosian and Josh Gorges were on the injured list when Buffalo’ roster was released this morning, along with rookie Brendan Guhle and veteran Cody McCormick.

There is a bright light for Buffalo, however.

Gorges skated on Wednesday and could possibly dress tomorrow, per Bylsma. If he does play, it’ll likely be on a pairing with Rasmus Ristolainen.