SOCHI, February 6 (R-Sport) – The U.S. women’s hockey team had a surprise encounter with Russian President and renowned hockey fan Vladimir Putin at the Sochi Olympics, captain Meghan Duggan said Thursday.
Putin stopped during a tour of the Olympic village in Sochi to chat with the players as they drank coffee in a break area, Duggan said.
"He came right up to us, introduced himself and said nice to meet you," she said. "When we told him we played hockey, his eyes lit up."
Duggan added: “Being an American and meeting President Obama is close to my heart...but meeting the president of another nation is a big deal."
Putin occasionally plays hockey at charity events and took part in an exhibition game alongside Russia's defense minister Sergei Shoigu and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko at the Bolshoy Ice Dome in Sochi’s Olympic Park, which will host the women’s final February 20 and the men’s gold medal game three days later.