The Olympics turned out to be a rough one for Norway’s Mats Zuccarello and now the New York Rangers will have to deal with the aftermath.
According to a report out of Norway, the hand injury that knocked Zuccarello out of action against Russia is a non-displaced fracture.
Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants says the Rangers said an MRI out of Russia confirmed the injury and he’ll be reevaluated on Thursday by a team medical consultant.
The injury comes at a most unfortunate time for both Zuccarello and the Rangers. This season, he leads the team in points with 43 and is tied with Brad Richards for second on the team in goals behind Rick Nash.
The Rangers are in second place in the Metropolitan Division but are 16 points behind Pittsburgh for first. If they’re without Zuccarello for a length of time, they’ll need to see someone else step up offensively to fill his shoes.
It seems Canada isn’t the only team that has to deal with dissatisfied fans even in the face of victory.
Russia’s 4-0 win against Norway on Tuesday helped move them into the quarterfinals and a pair of goals in the closing minutes helped pad the lead. One critique they faced was that they weren’t fired up to face a non-rival like Norway.
Russian captain Pavel Datsyuk doesn’t agree with that at all as Russia’s RSport shares.
“Everyone played well, everyone did their job,” said Datsyuk. “A very tough game. I don’t agree that we weren’t fired up for the Norwegians,” he added, but conceded: “It probably looked that way from the back-row seats.”
Take that, people sitting far away.
You’d have to almost forgive Russia if they were looking ahead to the next round against Finland. Norway performed the worst of the 12 teams during the preliminary round and didn’t look thrilling doing so.
As it was, Russia outshot Norway 31-22 and poured it on in the second period by a 14-6 margin. They may not be succeeding with flash and dash with superstars scoring all over the place, but with the goal to win gold, the Russians keep marching along whether they look fired up or not.
Russia has made its call in goal for the qualification playoff round.
Team Russia announced Sergei Bobrovsky will get the start against Norway instead of Semyon Varlamov.
Varlamov was thought to be the favorite to get the start after he put up a shutout against Slovakia and was outstanding in two starts during round-robin play. Bobrovsky’s lone start came against Team USA, a 3-2 shootout loss in which he stopped 31 shots. While he didn’t play poorly in that game, Varlamov appeared to play better.
Norway is the lowest seed in the tournament after the opening round at 12th overall. Russia was the top team to not get a bye after they finished the round with six standings points. The Russians head into Tuesday’s game (7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN) as heavy favorites.