USA to World Semis: Thursday notes

Congratulations to Team USA for its 3-1 win over Switzerland. Your reward is another crack for Russia with a ticked-off Alex Ovechkin arriving in town. Never easy.

The Americans took care of their business, coming from behind after an early Roman Josi goal with three goals in a row, beginning with Ben Smith and Charlie Coyle 57 seconds apart midway through the second. Two assists for Anders Lee; one for Mark Arcobello. Later, Russia took a 3-0 lead against Sweden, chasing Jhonas Enroth; with Anders Nilsson taking over, Sweden came all the way back to tie it late, but Evgeni Malkin scored 26 seconds later, and Russia added an empty-netter to reach the semis.

USA-Russia is Saturday at 1. There’ll be another hockey game going on at the same time a little further west, one that Ovechkin might’ve been playing in had things gone just a little differently Wednesday night. Thus, NBCSN’s not showing USA-Russia live, but it’ll stream on their site and air on tape delay Saturday night at 11.

Utterly ageless Jaromir Jagr scored his second of the game, sixth of the tournament, with 4:30 left to give the host Czechs a win over Finland to reach the other semifinal. They’ll get Canada, speaking of “never easy” and “good luck.” In eight games, Canada has outscored opponents 58-14. (Though its close games were France for some reason and top-sixers Sweden and the Czech Republic.)

So it’s both first-place finishers and both third-place finishers, setting up two semifinal rematches.

Back on these shores, Tyler Bertuzzi scored his second goal all of 13 seconds into overtime to give Grand Rapids a 3-1 lead in its series against Rockford. Game 5 is Sunday. Utica claimed a 3-2 lead going back home with a 3-1 win at Oklahoma City behind Jacob Markstrom’s 33 saves.

The Ottawa Senators announced that owner Eugene Melnyk needs a liver transplant, and they’re seeking a donor.

The newest bridge from Detroit to Canada is going to be named for Gordie Howe.

And Harry Shearer won’t be part of “The Simpsons” anymore? Dark days.

Michael Fornabaio