After another painful second round exit in the NHL, Caps Russians Evgeny Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov ended their seasons Sunday with a consolation prize from the 2017 World Championship.
Kuznetsov and Orlov’s Team Russia defeated Finland in the bronze medal game. It’s Kuznetsov’s fourth career World Championship medal (two gold and two bronze) and Orlov’s third (one gold and two bronze).
After giving up four unanswered third period goals and losing to Canada in the semifinals the day before, Russia’s bronze-medal celebration Sunday was muted.
That’s because the Russians, who at one point had a 4-0 lead, collapsed again late, giving up three consecutive goals to Finland. But after a late third period timeout by Oleg Znarok, Russia re-found its footing and the team’s leading scorer, Nikita Kucherov, scored his seventh goal of the tournament. Russia would hold on to win 5-3.
As time elapsed, Russia skated over and celebrated with goaltender Andrei Vasilevski.
The team then lined up for the medal ceremony.
The medals were presented by Hockey Hall of Famer Vladislav Tretiak.
Orlov, who lined up with Kuznetsov, received his medal first.
Both players shook hands with Skoda CEO Bernhard Maier before skating away.
Russia’s Sergei Andronov accepted the third place trophy from IIHF Lifetime member Shoichi Tomita, Tretiak, and Maier.
Russia’s national anthem was played next and Orlov’s wife, Varvara Orlova, was captured by cameras singing with the other WAGs of Team Russia (top row, third from the left).
Russia then took the team photo, officially concluding Kuznetsov and Orlov’s seasons.
“It feels nice always when you play for bronze medal game you want to win game because it’s like a mini-final for you. It’s just something,” Kuznetsov said. “Fourth place is always tough.”
— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) May 21, 2017
Both Caps players will be restricted free agents this summer.
Photos: Andre Ringuette
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