The 2014 Winter Games are drawing to a close, but we still have the most important contests ahead of us. Over the weekend, we’ll find out who will win the bronze, silver, and gold medals:
Bronze Medal Game: United States versus Finland (10 a.m. ET, NBCSN) WATCH IT LIVE HERE
It’s certainly not the contest either one of these teams wanted to be in, but it’s the last chance for these squads to go home with something. The Americans were frustrated by Canada’s defensive style in the semifinals, so Finland might prove to be a particularly challenging opponent for them given that the Canadians were taking a page out of the Finns book.
For Finland, this match represents an opportunity to finish with a medal for the fifth time in the last six Winter Olympics. In that vein, Finnish forward Tuomo Ruutu will be trying to go 11-for-11 when it comes to winning a medal in international competitions.
Gold Medal Game: Canada versus Sweden (7 a.m. ET, NBC) WATCH IT LIVE HERE
The Canadians and Swedes both had to defeat their geographical and former gold medal game advisories in the semifinals to set up this contest. No matter what happens, the winner of this match will become the first men’s team to win gold with an undefeated record since the Soviet Union did it in 1984.
Sweden and Canada have won the last three Olympic gold medals, but they haven’t been frequent opponents. In fact, these two nations have only met twice since NHLers started competing in the games and never in a situation where either team faced elimination. Sweden earned a 5-2 win over Canada in 2002 to open the round robin and the Canadians beat the Swedes 3-2 in 1998.
In other words, these teams aren’t used to facing each other when the stakes are this high, but they’ll adapt in a hurry.