The cool thing about the athletes' village at the Olympic Games is the inter-mingling of the competitors from the various sports. Skiiers hanging out with lugers. Figure skaters chilling with curlers. Speed skaters kickin' it with hockey players. It's one big happy environment.
For U.S. speed skater Brian Hansen, other than leaving with a medal or two, his goal in Sochi has been to meet every player there from his favorite NHL team: the Chicago Blackhawks. With less than a week to go before the Games close, the Illinois native is close to fulfilling his mission.
There are 10 Blackhawks in Sochi and Hansen has so far met and taken a picture with seven of them.
It started with Marian Hossa...
Marian Hossa check! 1 Blackhawk down, 9 to go #Sochi2014 @NHLBlackhawks (photo credz- Zdeno Chara) pic.twitter.com/yXT1GbCDOV — Brian Hansen (@BrianTHansen) February 11, 2014
Niklas Hjalmarsson and Johnny Oduya! 4 down, 6 to go @NHLBlackhawks pic.twitter.com/WACxA7MlHB — Brian Hansen (@BrianTHansen) February 13, 2014
Alright here's @NHLBlackhawks Olympian number 7, Patrick Sharp! @10PSharp #Sochi2014 pic.twitter.com/3qVmrfUvYL — Brian Hansen (@BrianTHansen) February 17, 2014
Hansen actually got into speed skating as a 10-year old while he was playing hockey at Northbrook Speed Skating Club in Northbrook, Illinois. Almost 14 years later, he is the owner of a team pursuit silver medal from the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. He's competed in three events in Sochi, but did not medal.
All that's left now on Hansen's checklist are Canada's Duncan Keith and Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane of the U.S.
Stick-tap Nina Falcone
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