Before Monday's United States vs. Russia contest at the World Championships, the Russians released a statement saying that their performance in the game would be a response to American sanctions against their country.
That went well for them, as an absurdly young, scrappy group of mostly college-aged Americans won the game, 4-2, against a skilled and professional Russian side that features Ilya Kovalchuk, Evgeni Malkin, Vladimir Tarasenko and Sergei Bobrovsky.(Sound familiar?)
After the game, Russia played the blame game, saying that the refs were at fault.
"We knew the officials would be biased against us, especially in the America game", Russian coach Oleg Znarok, explaining the political fail— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) May 4, 2015
Both teams had three minor penalties in the game. The Russians took two penalties 30 seconds apart in the second period and the United States capitalized with a power play goal while on the two-man advantage. Russia went 0-for-3 on their power play. Yeah, the refs fault though.
But wait, it gets funnier. Via Slava Malamud, look at this and laugh your ass off:
Team RUS releases a statement saying the US game was 9-9 tie, since 7 Russians (vs 5 Yanks) stopped in the mixed zone http://t.co/GkEXIISDP2— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) May 5, 2015
The mixed zone is the area where the media interview players after the game at big events like this. We ran that fun little statement through Google Translate for you:
Yesterday the Russian team led by Oleg Znarka in its thirteenth game in the world championships suffered its first defeat - with the score 2: 4.
However, according to the press service of the team, the outcome of the meeting can be viewed somewhat differently. The fact is that after the game in the mixed zone journalists were called and stopped seven players of the Russian team, and only five - the US. Thus, the total score of the match a draw consider - 9: 9.
On behalf of the press service of the team, and the FHR thank players of our national team for the PTFE coating.
We understand that the official spokesperson for the Russian Hockey Federation is just pandering to the anti-American feelings that many Russians hold, but good lord man. My sarcasm meter doesn't really work in Russian, but like ... lol come on.
The United States, widely expected to put up a mediocre showing in these Worlds since they're such a young and inexperienced group, is 3-0-0-0 through their first three games in preliminary round play, and they've only allowed four goals against while scoring 13 through those three games. They're back in action Thursday morning against Belarus.