There will be at least one member of the Philadelphia Flyers in the Olympic semi-finals. This morning Kimmo Timonen helped Finland knock off the hometown Russians. Timonen had one assist, skated for 17:06, and did not take any penalties.
This game was one of the most exciting games of the Men’s Ice Hockey competition. The game was fast paced, physical, and had a considerable amount of skill. Ilya Kovalchuk gave the Russians an early lead on a beautiful power play shot. The crowd erupted and the Russian players looked exuberant. Unfortunately for them, the Finns would take control for a majority of the rest of the game. Even though the Russians had plenty of scoring chances, they were clearly outplayed by the disciplined Finnish squad.
Finland’s goals were Juhamatti Aaltonen, Teemu Selanne, and Mikael Granlund. On both the second and third goals Mikael Granlund showed off his speed and vision on the ice. Selanne played a fantastic game earning the primary assist on Granlund’s goal while Granlund earned the primary assist on Selanne’s tally. Minutes after the third and final Finnish goal, Russia pulled Varlamov and replaced him with Bobrovsky. The Russians made a valiant effort to come back, but they were not up to the task (or up to the Rask, I’ll leave that up to you).
Timonen had the secondary assist on the Granlund tally. Timonen was perched on the right wing during a power play. As he got the puck he found an open Teemu Selanne in the slot. Selanne shot the puck and Granlund scooped it up and put it behind Varlamov. As previously mentioned, Timonen played for 17:06 and he was predominantly paired with Sami Vatanen. Although Vatanen is relatively small in stature, the pairing has been effective (much like Timonen-Gustafsson pairing last season). Timonen has been making smart decisions throughout the tournament and he, along with Vatanen and Olli Maatta, is a major part of the reason for Finland’s success.
Finland will take on Sweden in one of the two semi-final games on Friday. The winner will advance to the Gold Medal game while the loser will play for the Bronze medal.
The Flyers are not one of the favorites to win the Stanley Cup but their defenseman Kimmo Timonen has a chance to win a medal at the Olympics in Sochi as his native Finland is in the semifinals. Watch Timonen in person when he returns to the NHL by grabbing your Flyers tickets today.