Skip to content

Dealing from a ‘position of strength,’ Bylsma chooses Quick

Feb 12, 2014, 5:49 AM EDT

Sochi Olympics Ice Hockey Men AP

SOCHI, Russia — It would’ve been easy for Dan Bylsma to go with Ryan Miller.

The United States head coach could’ve compared the numbers: Miller’s .923 save percentage this season with the Buffalo Sabres, to Jonathan Quick’s .911 mark with the Los Angeles Kings.

He could’ve pointed to Miller’s outstanding play in the 2010 Vancouver Games that helped the Americans win a silver medal, or to Quick’s past few NHL games, which haven’t all gone well.

But Bylsma went with Quick, announcing his decision Wednesday afternoon following practice, the day before the U.S. will open its Olympic tournament versus Slovakia.

“We’re dealing with a position of strength when it comes to the goaltender, and the goaltender decision,” said Bylsma.

“Jonathan’s won a championship with his team, won a Stanley Cup. Certainly Ryan this year has played very well for his team as well, so it’s been dealing from where we have two very good guys to be in net. Jonathan will be getting the nod.”

And what about Saturday versus Russia?

“We have plans for game one.”

How did Miller take the news?

“We had a conversation. He said, ‘I’m ready when you call on me.’”

Miller was understandably disappointed, but also supportive of Quick.

“Obviously I want to play and compete and be here and do my part,” said Miller. “I think he’s a great goalie and he’s going to do great for us. You know, see where it goes from here, and just be ready to go.”

As for Quick, the 2012 playoff MVP said his job now is to give his team a chance to win.

“I believe it’s just for tomorrow’s game, so I’m just keeping focused on what we have to do to win tomorrow’s game,” he said. “Obviously in a short tournament, you want to try to make the most of every time you’re on the ice, whether it’s practice or a game.”

Slovakia won’t be an easy out for the Americans, and in a way that may actually be a good thing for Bylsma, who will want to get as good a handle as possible on Quick’s play before Saturday’s showcase game of the preliminary round against the tournament hosts.

Latest Posts
  1. Blues lose Morrow for remainder of Chicago series

    Apr 23, 2014, 2:43 PM EDT

    BrendenMorrow2 Getty Images

    Physical battle starting to take its toll.

  2. Not for nothing, but the Avs haven’t scored on Kuemper yet

    Apr 23, 2014, 2:33 PM EDT

    Darcy Kuemper AP

    All the goals came against Ilya Bryzgalov, which is worth mentioning.

  3. NHL announces start times for Saturday’s playoff games

    Apr 23, 2014, 1:51 PM EDT

    StanleyCupPlayoffs14

    All games can be seen on either NBC, NBCSN or CNBC.

  4. Duck drama: Selanne to sit as healthy scratch in Game 4

    Apr 23, 2014, 1:26 PM EDT

    Teemu Selanne Getty Images

    First time he’s been scratched in the playoffs in 10 years.

  5. High-powered ‘Hawks, Pens look to cure power play woes

    Apr 23, 2014, 1:10 PM EDT

    Jonathan Toews #19 and Patrick Kane #88 of the Chicago Blackhawks talk in a break from Game Five of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Jobing.com Arena on April 21, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Blackhawks defeated the Coyotes 2-1 in overtime.
(April 20, 2012 - Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

    Two of the NHL’s best offenses have struggled with the man advantage.

  6. Recchi on the Canucks: ‘When you lose that swagger, it’s tough’

    Apr 23, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT

    Washington Capitals v Boston Bruins Getty Images

    “That’s what made them successful because they believed in what they were doing.”

  7. The loss of Robidas is a ‘huge loss’ for the Ducks

    Apr 23, 2014, 11:53 AM EDT

    Vernon Fiddler, Stephane Robidas AP

    A “real steady force back there” must now be replaced.

  8. MacKinnon, Johnson and Palat named Calder Trophy finalists

    Apr 23, 2014, 11:26 AM EDT

    NASHVILLE, TN - MARCH 25: Nathan MacKinnon #29 of the Colorado Avalanche skates against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on March 25, 2014 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) Getty Images

    Colorado forward is expected to take home the honors.

  9. Preds OK with Rinne (hip) playing at Worlds

    Apr 23, 2014, 11:16 AM EDT

    Goalie Pekka Rinne #35 of the Nashville Predators looks on during a break in the action against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on March 30, 2013 in Denver, Colorado.
(March 29, 2013 - Source: Doug Pensinger/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

    “He didn’t get to play enough hockey this season, so he’s still eager to play.”

  10. Get your game notes: Blues at Blackhawks

    Apr 23, 2014, 11:02 AM EDT

    Ryan Miller, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane AP

    Chicago’s been tough to beat at home in the playoffs.

  11. Get your game notes: Penguins at Blue Jackets

    Apr 23, 2014, 10:58 AM EDT

    JacketsPenguins AP

    Can Columbus rebound from its Game 3 collapse?

  12. Sutter vows Kings ‘won’t go away quietly’

    Apr 23, 2014, 2:17 AM EDT

    Darryl Sutter AP

    They’ll be facing elimination on Thursday.

  13. Video: Gaborik scores highlight-reel goal

    Apr 23, 2014, 12:07 AM EDT

    MarianGaborik Getty Images

    Impressive, but just his first marker of the series.

Featured video

Chances Blue Jackets bounce back?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. T. Oshie (3065)
  2. D. Backes (3048)
  3. M. Duchene (2695)
  4. B. Bishop (2390)
  5. S. Mason (2351)
  1. R. Getzlaf (2329)
  2. O. Palat (2252)
  3. H. Zetterberg (1892)
  4. N. MacKinnon (1833)
  5. R. Emery (1578)