Team USA had their chances, but failed to get any sustained pressure in the offensive zone; falling to Canada 1-0 in Friday’s semifinal matchup.
Goaltender Carey Price stopped all 31 American shots for the shutout, smothering the puck to limit second-chance opportunities for the United States. The team in front of him got into shooting/passing lanes, forcing the Americans into tight-angle shots; none of which they were able to capitalize on.
"That defensive group in front of me plays very well," said Price. "They’re very good at boxing guys out and letting me having my eyes. Our forwards backchecked really hard tonight. I think that was the difference."
The U.S. defense was masterful as well. As was goaltender Jonathan Quick, who stopped 36 of 37 Canadian shots.
The only puck that got by Quick was a deflection by Jamie Benn off of a point shot by defenseman Jay Bouwmeester. Screened on the play, Quick was not able to adjust to the deflection until it was far too late.
Canada was able to dictate the pace of the play, pressuring the puck immediately to neutralize the U.S. speed. Offensively, they were able to set up their cycle to open up the U.S. defense for higher quality opportunities.
"I think we scored one goal but we generated a lot controlled the game for a big part," said Bouwmeester . "We did a good job, the forwards did a great job tonight on the puck, I think that stopped a lot of their offense before it even started."
With the gold medal on the line, Canada will now face Sweden on Sunday in a matchup of the last two Olympic champions; while the United States will play Finland on Saturday for bronze.