Ted Nolan's team beat Switzerland today. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Ted Nolan getting best out of Latvia at Olympics

Which game will you be watching?

Wednesday at noon, Ted Nolan’s underdog Latvia squad, fresh off today’s huge 3-1 upset of Switzerland, will play mighty Team Canada in quarterfinal action at the Sochi Games. At the same time, Team USA will face the Czech Republic.

Some Canadian Sabres fans might be torn watching their country play against Nolan, Buffalo’s popular interim coach.

Nolan has helped make the hardworking Latvians one of Sochi’s best stories. The country, which finished 12th at the last two Olympics, hadn’t won since beating Austria in 2002. Latvia has one NHL player, Sabres rookie Zemgus Girgensons.

Canada hasn’t played Latvia in Olympic action since Feb. 7, 1936, an 11-0 win, according to Sportsnet.

“You never know,” Nolan said earlier this month. “One thing with the Olympics, that’s where dreams come true and miracles happen.”

Clearly, Nolan, who’s earned the respect of the Sabres and made them a much better team since taking over Nov. 13, has a huge impact on his Latvian players.

Consider these quotes from Latvia’s Kaspars Daugavins, who played 91 NHL games with Ottawa and Boston:

Daugavins sounds a bit like Nolan:

Related: Taking Latvia coaching job changed Ted Nolan’s career, helped Sabres notice him

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