The Russian men's ice hockey team suffered a shocking defeat in its opening game at the 2018 Winter Olympics on Wednesday, as it fell 3-2 to Slovakia at Gangneung Hockey Centre in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
"We were the ones who gave away the game", Russian head coach Oleg Znarok told a news conference. "The majority (of players) did not work, while everything was good at training sessions".
The match started too well for the team from Russian Federation as its defenseman Vladislav Gavrikov scored the first goal less than three minutes into the game.
Russian teams have now played Slovakia in four consecutive Olympic tournaments, losing three of those and winning in 2014 in a shootout.
The Russians tried to respond after Ceresnak's goal but couldn't take advantage of two power plays in the final 10 minutes. If they win the gold medal, the Olympic anthem will play.
Peter Olvecky cut the deficit in half at the 16:06 mark and Martin Bakos tied it up with just over two minutes left in the first. Both teams tested each other with strong attacks throughout the period, but it turned out to be scoreless until the siren signaled the end of another 20-minute stretch.
After a scoreless second period, Slovakia took advantage of sloppy play by from the Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation in the third as Ceresnak collected the victor on a powerplay off a second delay of game penalty.
The Olympic Athletes of Russian Federation got off to a hot start on two goals just 4:08 into the game. And failing to beat Slovakia at the Olympics is a reminder of more recent problems. "It is early to speak about the reshuffles as we need to sleep on it".
The ice hockey team from Russian Federation is playing next match on Friday against the Slovenian team, which on Wednesday defeated Team USA 3-2 in overtime. Slovakia is taking on the United States team on Friday.
I have said it before, and will say it again.The worst thing you can do to a Russian team in global play is make them a favorite.These Olympic Athletes from.Can I just say "Russian Team?"