Team USA Takes on Swiss - NBC Bay Area

Team USA Takes on Swiss



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    The U.S. men face Switzerland in the quarterfinals.

    If you're on the Team USA hockey bandwagon, then you'll want to be watching this afternoon live on line or at 3 p.m. on NBC when the U.S. Men's team takes the ice to begin the quarterfinal playoff round.

    Winners advance, losers settle for going to the nightclubs for the rest of the week.

    The Americans will take on Team Switzerland, who had to play their way into this playoff round with a 3-2 win over Belarus Tuesday. The U.S Team has the top seed in the playoff round thanks to that thrilling win over Canada Sunday.

    The Swiss will be anything but neutral in these quarterfinals. They got beat by the U.S. in the opening game, and will have an adjusted game plan along with a score to settle. At the last Winter Olympics, these Swiss upset not only the Canadians but also the mighty Czech squad.

    San Jose Sharks fans will recognize a familiar and hated villain on the Swiss side, goalkeeper Jonas Hiller of the Anaheim Ducks. Hiller, along with Chris Pronger and Scott Niedermayer, comprised the "loathsome threesome" that tortured the Sharks in last April's first-round playoff loss and still lurks in many Sharks fans' nightmares.

    "We know what the Swiss do. We obviously know their goaltender," U.S. coach and former Sharks coach Ron Wilson told ESPN. "They're the team that has the least to lose in this tournament. They are playing with house money."

    "House" money might be the right analogy there coach. This is a playoff round, so it's win or go home. 

     Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who hasn't been this excited over hockey since the Under-10 League brawl game.