Oral history of 2010 gold-medal game

Paul Stastny: "In the locker room, you could feel the atmosphere; you could hear it. It was like, 'Let's just get this game started.' It was so much excitement."

Zach Parise: "It's a different feeling. There was just such a different vibe around the locker room. And even just amongst each other, just knowing what was at stake."

Ryan Callahan: "It was [loud]. Like I said, that goes to the energy you feel, not only in the building, but the whole city leading up to it and the day before. Being in Vancouver, such a hockey city; it was a cool place. We knew we were up against a tough opponent. ... We were going into a tough game, knew it would be close."

Paul Stastny: "It really hits you when you're out there for warm-ups. It couldn't be any louder for warm-ups. Everybody was so excited for it. Honestly, it reminded me of when you see the commercials of the U.S. national soccer team playing in Mexico or something. ... That warm-up was louder than any NHL arena in playoff time. You can't even describe how loud it was. After that, you realize the magnitude."

Jonathan Toews: "For us, it was all or nothing. I think it is anytime for Canada at the Olympics. But to be at home with our home fans, with the efforts of all the different Canadian athletes were putting out to win golds, win medals for our country, that's the one we expected to win. Anything less than that is disappointing. You're constantly reminded of that when you're in that atmosphere."

Wayne Gretzky, special adviser, Team Canada: "First of all, I remember feeling that going into the gold-medal game, the two best teams in the tournament were going to meet. That was in the back of my mind. I also remember that day before the game just how nervous I was eight years earlier [as Team Canada general manager in Salt Lake City], when we played in the gold-medal game. I just remember all the excitement and nerves and what everyone was going through. But really, quite honestly, that day in Vancouver, I had a great sense of belief and relief going into the game that Canada was going to win the gold medal."

Mike Babcock, head coach, Team Canada: "Just remember the opportunity at hand: being Canadian and having an opportunity to win Olympic gold at home. To share that with your family, to share that with Vancouver, to share that with Canada, those were my thoughts.

"I just remember it was a dream of mine one day there would be a party in every little house and farmhouse and little community and town across Canada if we were able to get it done.

"I thought we were calm and composed. We went through the structure of how we were going to play and have success. We were very businesslike. We had very good leadership in our room in [Chris] Pronger and Niedermayer, some guys that had been around a long time. And I thought that really helped us."

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