Olympic hockey daily: U.S.-Canada gold-medal showdown on tap after one-sided semifinals

A recap of the Pyeongchang Games men's and women's hockey tournaments, with a focus on Team USA's gold-medal quests.

Three Stars

1. Dani Cameranesi, USA

The 22-year-old forward scored two goals against Finland in the Americans' 5-0 rout, propelling them to the gold-medal game. Her first tally was a high short-side beauty after the U.S. forced a turnover in the Finland zone. That made it 2-0 with 1:22 to go in the first period, and it was a critical goal: Coach Robb Stauber wanted his team to get on all-world goalie Noora Raty early, and Cameranesi helped accomplish that. She also assisted on Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson's second-period power-play goal to make it 3-0 and put the game away 45 seconds into the third period with a power-play goal to make it 5-0.

2. Jennifer Wakefield, Canada

The 28-year-old forward scored the first and third goals for Canada in its 5-0 rout over the Russians, which put them in the gold-medal game against the U.S. The Boston University alum opened the scoring just 1:50 into the game, and scored what was basically the clincher 1:59 into the third period to make it 3-0.

3. Nana Fujimoto, Japan

We didn't have our Olympic Daily this weekend, so a belabored shout-out to Japan goalie Nana Fujimoto, who backstopped the Japanese women to their first Olympic victory. She stopped 28 of 29 shots in a 2-1 overtime win against Sweden. She earned many fans in the U.S. during her time with the New York Riveters of the National Women's Hockey League.


Women's semifinal: USA 5, Finland 0; Canada 5, OAR 0

The Duggan controversy

The Americans' win over Finland in the semifinals was not without controversy, as U.S. defender Meghan Duggan appeared to go knee-on-knee with Finland's Ronja Savolainen, sending her into the boards.

There was no penalty on the play, and Savolainen returned to the game.

What's up with the U.S. men's team?

The U.S. men advanced to the qualification round -- because every team advances to the qualification round. The good news: The only team they've beaten is the team they're bracketed to face: Slovakia, whom the Americans topped 2-1 in their second game of the tournament, thanks to two power-play goals by Ryan Donato and 21 saves from Ryan Zapolski.

The Americans finished the preliminary round with a 1-1-1 record and a minus-4 goal differential. Their four goals, tied with Germany, are the third-fewest scored by any team in the men's tournament, better than only Norway (two) and Korea (one).

You can watch Team USA face Slovakia on Monday night at 10:10 p.m. ET.

What's up with the U.S. women's team?

Here we go! Puck drop for the gold-medal game between the U.S. and Canada is Wednesday night at 11:10 ET. It will mark the fifth time these two teams will meet for gold in six Olympic women's hockey tournaments, with Canada having won the past three finals (2002, 2010, 2014) after the U.S. won the inaugural tournament in 1998.

Canada defeated the U.S. 2-1 in their preliminary-round game, despite being outshot 45-23 by the Americans, who are averaging 44 shots per game. So what might be different in the rematch for the U.S.? Hopefully, that an emphasis on shot quality vs. quantity will make the difference, as was the focus headed into the Finland game.

"Look at the opportunities we've had within a 15-foot radius of the net. I would say 80 percent of our scoring chances have come from that area," Stauber said. "If anyone came and watched our last three or four practices, we're doing exactly what we think is going to happen in a game. It seems like a decent plan; now we have to execute it."

The five goals they hung on Raty and Finland have to be encouraging.

In the next 24 hours

Men's playoff qualification round: United States vs. Slovakia (Monday, 10:10 p.m. ET);

Women's classifications (7-8): Sweden vs. Korea (Monday, 10:10 p.m. ET)

Men's playoff qualification round: Slovenia vs. Norway (Tuesday, 2:40 a.m. ET)

Women's classifications (5-6): Switzerland vs. Japan (Tuesday, 2:40 a.m. ET)

Men's playoff qualification round: Finland vs. Korea (Tuesday, 7:10 a.m. ET)

Men's playoff qualification round: Switzerland vs. Germany (Tuesday, 7:10 a.m. ET)