The U.S. men’s hockey team was eliminated by Finland 2-0 in the IIHF World Championship quarterfinals Thursday, ending a six-game winning streak.
The U.S., which hasn’t won a world title since 1960, failed to build on the recent success of two bronze medals from the last four world championships.
The Americans rolled into the quarterfinals this week by topping a group that included Russia and Sweden.
The Finns barely advanced out of their group (by one point over tournament co-host France, which beat Finland 5-1) but had the Americans’ number again. Remember, Finland crushed the U.S. 5-0 in the Sochi Olympic bronze-medal game.
None of the stars from Sochi played for either team on Thursday, though.
Finland’s Harri Sateri shut out the Americans. Sateri, 27, was a San Jose Sharks fourth-round draft pick in 2008 but has never played in the NHL. Full stats are here.
The U.S. roster included one Olympian — Detroit Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard, who took the loss Thursday — and a star in Buffalo Sabres forward Jack Eichel. Eichel registered zero goals and five assists in eight games at worlds.
It appears unlikely that Howard, Eichel or any NHL players will make Team USA next year in PyeongChang with the league saying it will not participate in the Winter Games.
Finland advances to play Sweden in the worlds semifinals Saturday. Canada and Russia face off in the other semifinal.
All knockout round games are streaming live on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app.
Canada, the 2010 and 2014 Olympic champion, is trying to become the first nation to win three straight world titles since the Czechs in 2001.
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