It was clear heading into the 2014 Winter Olympics that Austria would need a lot out of their small contingent of NHL forwards to be competitive against the better teams in the tourney. Michael Grabner put on quite the show for the Austrians today, as they surprised the Finnish team by scoring four goals on them.
Grabner potted three of those tallies, scoring a hat trick in his first game of the tournament and taking over the scoring lead with several games left on the docket during day two of play.
It was expected that Thomas Vanek would do most of the heavy offensive lifting for the Austrians, but Grabner was lights out in this contest. He scored early on in the first period to put Austria up ahead for a short time, and would later pump home two goals in the third period.
It wouldn’t be enough to down a Finland team that continuously bounced back from deficits before opening up the flood gates heading into the third period. Four goals is typically enough to win on any stage, even the Olympics, and it’s a shame to see Grabner’s effort go to waste in such a fashion.