Americans believe 'it’s time' to win World Cup

Stephen Whyno
Associated Press

Toronto — Patrick Kane looks at the 2014 Sochi Olympic final loss to Canada as the United States being one goal away from gold.

Jonathan Quick looks at the 2010 Vancouver Olympic semifinal loss as the U.S. being one goal away from playing for gold.

This generation of U.S. players always has been one goal away and unable to finish.

With Kane, Quick, Zach Parise, Ryan Suter and captain Joe Pavelski among those back for another crack, the realization is setting in that the World Cup of Hockey is the best and perhaps last chance for the U.S. to win an international championship.

Coach John Tortorella has told his team, “It’s time.”

“We’re probably in the prime and peak of our careers right now where we feel that it’s time to make something happen,” Kane said. “You can think about that pressure, you can do whatever you want with it.

“But it comes down to this tournament for us and this tournament only.”

The Americans open tournament play in Toronto Saturday against Europe, and the showdown against Canada is scheduled for Tuesday. The event runs through Oct. 1.

With only three games in round-robin play, there’s urgency for every team to start strong and no breathing room.

Kane pointed out previous American generations won at the 1960 and 1980 Olympics and 1996 World Cup of Hockey.

“We’ve been there and we’ve had our chances and it’s time to break through,” Pavelski said. “We’ve been close, but we’re looking for a little bit more out of each other and to really find that right ingredient and that big play at the right moment.”

Red Wings teammates Tomas Tatar and Tomas Vanek of play for Europe.

World Cup of Hockey

at Toronto

PRELIMINARY ROUND

SATURDAY

■Team Europe vs. Team USA, 3:30 p.m. ESPN2

■Team Canada vs. Team Czech Republic, 8 p.m. ESPN News

SUNDAY

■Team Russia vs. Team Sweden, 3 p.m. ESPN

■Team Finland vs. Team North America, 8 p.m. ESPN2

MONDAY

■Team Czech Republic vs. Team Europe, 3 p.m. ESPN2

■Team North America vs. Team Russia, 8 p.m. ESPN2

TUESDAY

■Team Finland vs. Team Sweden, 3 p.m. ESPN

■Team Canada vs. Team USA, 8 p.m. ESPN

WEDNESDAY

■Team North America vs. Team Sweden, 3 p.m. ESPN

■Team Canada vs. Team Europe, 8 p.m. ESPN2

THURSDAY

■Team Finland vs. Team Russia, 3 p.m. ESPN

■Team Czech Republic vs. Team USA, 8 p.m. ESPN2

SEMIFINALS

■Saturday, Sept. 24: 7 p.m. ESPN2, CBC

■Sunday, Sept. 25: 1 p.m. ESPN, CBC

FINALS (BEST-OF-3)

All games on ESPN and CBC

■Tuesday, Sept. 27: 8 p.m.

■Thursday, Sept. 29: 8 p.m.

■x-Saturday, Oct. 1: 7 p.m.

x-if necessary