NHL Olympics Headlines – February 23, 2014.

Canada defeats Sweden to win Olympic gold, fallout from Finland’s win over the USA in the bronze medal game and more.

Sidney Crosby scores Canada's second goal in their 3-0 victory over Sweden in the gold medal game.

Sidney Crosby scores Canada’s second goal in their 3-0 victory over Sweden in the gold medal game.

CBC.CA: Jonathan Toews, Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz were the goalscorers as Canada blanked Sweden 3-0 to win gold in men’s hockey at the Sochi Olympics. Carey Price made 24 saves for the shutout. This is first time Canada has won back-to-back gold medals in men’s hockey since 1952.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was among the most dominant performances I’ve ever seenby a Canadian team in an international tournament involving top professional.  Their puck possession and solid team defense neutralized the Swedes offense and their forward lines were relentless on the attack.

YAHOO! SPORTS: Greg Wyshynski broke the news Swedish center Nicklas Backstrom missed the gold medal game after testing positive for a banned substance after using an allergy medication.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Backstrom was probably unaware that medication used in allergy medication like Claritin is on the IOC list of banned substances. Likely a mistake on his part, but a significant one as it cost him a chance to play in the gold medal game.

TSN.CA: Teemu Selanne, in his final Olympic game, scored twice as Finland blanked the United States 5-0 in Saturday’s bronze medal game. Tuukka Rask made 26 saves for the shutout.

ESPN.COM: Scott Burnside breaks down why the Americans, after being so dominant throughout the Olympic tournament, fell to the Canadians in the semifinal and to the Finns in the bronze medal game.

NBC SPORTS: Jason Brough believes these Olympics were a good experience for the Americans’ young players, especially their defensemen.

NEW YORK TIMES: Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs, who’s also chairman of the NHL Board of Governors, listed four areas of concern for NHL owners regarding future Olympic participation. “Shutting the league down for more than two weeks and its effect on fans and corporate partners; the risk of injury to the top players; mental and physical fatigue among those players; and the compressed schedule and “the challenges it creates for the buildings.” It’s believed many team owners prefer a return to a World Cup of Hockey format. “Players would still risk injury, but the league would share in the revenue, travel would be limited, and if played in the preseason, the tournament would not interfere with the N.H.L. schedule.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ve heard and read from folks citing the positive reasons why the NHL should or will participate in the 2018 Olympics.  An influential owner like Jacobs has explained why that’s not a certainty. If those owners don’t want future Olympic participation, it won’t happen, no matter how much the players still want to play, or what less-influential owners want.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Blackhawks star Patrick Kane hopes to put “disappointing” Olympics behind him.

DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche winger P.A. Parenteau hopes for a strong finish to what’s been an up-and-down season for him.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Stephen Weiss looked good in practice, hopes to fill the gap left by the sidelined Henrik Zetterberg.