Oral history of 2010 gold-medal game

Wayne Gretzky: "I don't think I really got nervous at all for them until the Americans tied it up late in the game. And when that happened, you know anything can happen in overtime."


OVERTIME

The two teams, edgy with anticipation and adrenaline amid the deafening roar, skated onto the ice for the opening faceoff of sudden-death overtime. Soon, a hero would be made. The tense, early moments were alive with dramatic plays, including a golden opportunity by Team USA's Joe Pavelski.

Sidney Crosby: "You could tell right from the start of overtime we were skating, we weren't sitting back. I think that's the attitude you want in overtime."

Jamie Langenbrunner: "I felt we carried the play early on. We had some opportunities."

Ron Wilson: "Pavelski intercepted a Niedermayer pass and fired one that Luongo had no idea where the puck was, and the puck stuck right here, between his mask and his shoulder. He caught it like that. Only Pav does stuff like this: He anticipated where Niedermayer was passing the puck and suckered him and stuck his stick there and took a quick shot. We thought it was going in, then you're like, 'How did he stop that because [Luongo] hasn't been sharp all night?'"

Joe Pavelski: "I think about it a little bit once in a while, that's for sure. You always hope you get a chance in overtime and that you're ready for it. I was ready, I got the chance, but it didn't go in. I remember going back to the bench and Timmy Thomas just being like, 'That was close.'"

Ron Wilson: "And then a couple of minutes, about two minutes later, Phil Kessel hit the crossbar that nobody really realized because the puck hit the crossbar and went up into the netting. We saw it from the bench and we were like, 'Are you kidding me?'

"Phil hadn't done much in the Olympics, but he got one of those shots off like a really quick, really unbelievable release that only he can do and so he's literally one inch from himself scoring the golden goal."

Mike Babcock: "We turned the puck over early -- Niedermayer to Pavelski and he went high on Luongo. After that, we dominated. We had the puck for the rest of the time, I thought."

Sidney Crosby: "I don't remember Pavelski's chance. I just remember that last shift. They had a rush, it ended up coming back, I think Niedermayer passed it to me."

Scott Niedmermayer: "I don't know who I was trying to pass it to. I double-clutched on it, like I saw somebody, and then I saw their guy and I kind of did it halfway and then [Crosby] got it."

Zach Parise: "I was on the ice, and I remember Sid coming through and trying to split the D and the puck kind of rimmed around and hit the ref's foot, and I think that kind of threw Rafalski off a little bit and Sid read that."

Ron Wilson: "I still see the puck coming around the boards. I didn't see what happens because it's in this corner [near the team benches]. We had our two most reliable defensemen, Rafalski was out there and Ryan Suter. They were our go-to pair."

Sidney Crosby: "I tried to go through the D -- it kind of got broken up and just kind of a scramble in the corner."

Jamie Langenbrunner: "Unfortunately, I was on the ice up by my point. The puck came around the boards, however, that bounce came off there. I was covering the point, not sure who it was."

Drew Doughty: "I was on the ice. I was coming down the right point, coming in back door. If Sid shot it off the back pad, I'd try to get the rebound."

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