The Truth-O-Meter Says:

A photo from the Russia-Finland hockey game shows a sad Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev.

Tweets on Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 in posts on Twitter.

Photo showing sad Putin and Medvedev was taken days earlier, during a Russian hockey victory

After the Russian hockey team was bounced from the Olympics hockey tournament without a medal Wednesday, a picture of a sad-looking Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev started making the rounds on Twitter.

@Rayterrill Sad Putin after Russia eliminated from Olympic Hockey competition. LOLZ. RT @YopolisNews: Хоккей #Sochi2014

@DailyMirror Putin put out as Russia crash out of Olympic Ice Hockey.

@TheSportsGag Sad Putin is sad as Russia loses to Finland in Men’s Hockey

The photo is real. But it wasn’t taken during Russia’s 3-1 quarterfinal loss to Finland.

The photo was taken during an earlier game in the tournament between Russia and Slovakia. The Russians actually won the game where the photo was taken. The Russians beat Slovakia 1-0 in an overtime shootout.

The image making the rounds was captured by Sasha Mordovets, a contributor to Getty Images, on Feb. 16, 2014. (We confirmed this through Getty's image archives.)

Other photographers also captured the two Russian leaders at the Russia-Slovakia game. We found some from the Russian news agency Ria Novosti. The Russian government also released photos from the Slovakia game where Putin and Medvedev did not look quite as sad.

(It does not appear that either Putin or Medvedev even attended the Finland game. Putin was in Moscow for at least part of Feb. 19, and Medvedev was 6,500 miles from Sochi in the city of Mirny, where he toured a government space facility.)

Our ruling

A photo making the rounds on Twitter shows a sad-looking Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev allegedly after Russia’s tournament-ending hockey loss to Finland. The photo is legit. But it was taken days earlier, during a Russian 1-0 victory against Slovakia.

We're guessing Putin and Medvedev are sad that their team lost. But the photo circulating on the Internet does not actually depict that.

We rate the claim Pants on Fire.

About this statement:

Published: Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 at 10:44 a.m.

Subjects: Sports


Tweets, Feb. 19, 2014

Reuters, "Russia's Putin basks in the glory of the Games," Feb. 16, 2014

Russian government website, "Visit to Russia-Slovakia ice hockey match," accessed Feb. 19, 2014

Getty images archives, accessed Feb. 19, 2014

Written by: Aaron Sharockman
Researched by: Aaron Sharockman
Edited by: Angie Drobnic Holan

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