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Price to start for Team Canada, and he’s not worried what people think

Feb 18, 2014, 6:39 AM EDT

Sochi Olympics Ice Hockey Men AP

SOCHI, Russia — “I’m obviously excited,” said Carey Price, sounding about as excited as a guy about to do his laundry, or pick up a carton of milk from the grocery story, or any other mundane, everyday task.

Except there’s nothing mundane about what Price will be doing Wednesday. On that day, he’ll be in goal for the defending gold medalists in their first elimination game of the Olympics. From people back home, the expectations are that two more games will follow. The expectations are also for three straight victories.

Granted it’s not always easy to tell with athletes, but he didn’t seem too worried about it.

The 26-year-old was asked if playing in the hockey-mad fishbowl of Montreal had prepared him for life as Team Canada’s starter, with all the pressure and scrutiny that comes with it.

“You deal with the same type of situation, lots of cameras, lots of reporters,” he said. “But essentially it comes down to doing the same thing: stopping pucks.”

Is it any easier to ignore what’s being said and written when he’s halfway around the world in Russia?

“I live inside a bubble anyway,” he said. “I don’t get into too much about what anybody has to say really.”

But it hasn’t always been that way, he admitted. There were times when he was an NHL rookie when he wanted to know what people thought of him, and he gave in to the temptation to check.

“You’re not used to that type of coverage,” he said. “You might want to know how people think about you. But at this point in my career, I’m happy with the way things are going, and I know what I need to focus on. I don’t need to focus on what somebody else thinks I should be doing. I know what I need to be doing.”

Price has been solid at the Olympics, stopping all but two of the 35 shots he’s faced. He also came into the Games in good form. However, there are still those who believe Roberto Luongo should be the starter, citing the gold medal Luongo helped Canada win in 2010, as well as his wealth of big-game experience, which Price lacks in comparison.

Following Sunday’s 2-1 overtime victory versus Finland, Price insisted he doesn’t worry about the responsibility of playing the sport’s most important position, on a world stage, while representing a country that considers anything less than gold a failure.

“This is something I’ve done my whole life,” he said. “All I have to worry about is that next shot.”

  1. joey4id - Feb 18, 2014 at 7:23 AM

    No surprise here. It was obvious that whoever was given the net vs Norway and won would be tasked with taking the team to the good medal game. Go Price! Go Canada!

  2. joey4id - Feb 18, 2014 at 7:25 AM

    Check that. Finland not Norway

  3. imgoingtowichita - Feb 18, 2014 at 7:58 AM

    Canada has to hope that which ever goalie was chosen can’t matter. If Price has to steal a win, the Canadians are not playing up to their potential and would not beat (assuming) the US.

  4. penguins87and71 - Feb 18, 2014 at 8:41 AM

    No pressure. Everyone in Canada is counting on you. So yeah no pressure.

  5. patshal - Feb 18, 2014 at 9:17 AM

    Price is not that old but in my eyes he is a veteran. He knows what is best for him because it’s him. The reporters are not the ones stopping pucks. He is.

  6. skr213 - Feb 18, 2014 at 1:22 PM

    Anyone who thinks Lou should start needs their hockey IQ checked. We’re a long time gone from 2010.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Feb 19, 2014 at 12:40 AM

      A quick check on their save%s this year should nyield a VERY clear answer on who should start.

      However, being from Chicago, I’m kinda hopin that Canada will end up going with RL;)

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