Patrick Kane: US still one of best teams despite Olympic setback

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Chicago, IL, United States (4E Sports) – Despite failure to win a medal at the Sochi Winter Olympics, Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane believes the United States did not lose its place among the world’s hockey powers.

“Not at all,” said Kane, who returned to practice with the Blackhawks Wednesday. “I think we proved we were one the best teams in the tournament the first four games.”

The Americans won twice in regulation and once in a shootout to lead their pool with eight points, outscoring its opponents 15-4.

The Americans defeated the Czech Republic 5-3 in the quarterfinals, then lost to Canada 1-0 in the semifinals and were defeated 5-0 by Finland in the bronze-medal game.

The Americans entered the Olympics with high hopes after losing to Canada in overtime in the gold-medal game in 2010. The U.S. hasn’t won gold in men’s hockey since 1980.

Kane thought the disappointment of the close loss to Canada may have led to the struggles against Finland.

“We had a tough game against Canada,” Kane said. “It’s tough to come back after a loss like that, to come back and play the next night. Obviously we knew it was for a bronze medal.”

“I think our thoughts going into [the tournament] was kind of gold or nothing. When you get that ripped away from you, and you still have a chance to play for a medal, it’s still tough,” he added.

Kane said he was pleased with his play despite not having the production to reflect it. He finished the tournament with no goals and four assists in six games. He had three goals and two assists in six games in the Olympics in 2010.

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