Two U.S. goaltenders are free to take to the ice on Tuesday with images of the Statue of Liberty on their helmets after a misunderstanding about whether they violated an Olympic ban on political symbols.
Although patriotism is a large part of the Olympics for every athlete who competes, the International Olympic Committee has specific guidelines regarding what can and cannot be included on a uniform: "No item may feature the wording or lyrics from national anthems, motivational words, public/political messaging or slogans related to national identity". However, the ones worn by two members of the USA women's hockey team are stirring up controversy for an unexpected reason; because they include images of the Statue of Liberty. "There's the Olympic ones, which are obviously very clear about what marks and symbols can appear on training equipment".
Andrea Mazzarelli of USA Hockey told The Associated Press that the tean has been told the masks are approved as is, requiring no modifications. "And there's also the technical regulations of an worldwide federation". The results also booked the Olympic Athletes from Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and Finland into matches to determine United States and Canadian semi-final foes. Player Alex Rigsby also has an image of the statue on her chin strap.
In the Russia contest, USA Hockey's Jocelyne-Lamoureux Davidson set the Olympic hockey record for the fastest consecutive goals by a man or woman, helping the United States shut out the Russians 5-0.
Neither has yet played for the Americans at Pyeongchang, as Maddie Rooney backstopped the USA women to a 3-1 victory over Finland in their tournament opener.
Another Winter Olympics, another tussle over the masks of USA ice hockey goaltenders. No medal will be on the line, just positioning for the semifinals.