USA HOCKEY Making Moves

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For those of you who missed the USA vs Russia game this past Saturday, I feel bad for you. It was one of the most historic games for Team USA behind the Miracle on Ice in 1980. Since the game was at 4:30 am, I decided to DVR it and of course I recorded the game with extended time in case it went into OT & shootouts. Worst thing about watching a game on DVR is not being able to look at your phone or computer for a few hours. Being able to fast forward through the intermissions is awesome, but I have to say, I always prefer to watch a game live. However, 4:30 am is brutal, and DVR was necessary for a game time like this.

The game was outstanding to say the least. While Russia outsized Team USA, Coach Dan Bylsma had a few tricks up his sleeve to stop them on their home ice.

1. Put a body on Ovechkin.

2. Have Ryan Callahan fly around the ice like a mad man.

3. Speed kills.

These 3 minor elements of the game plan were key to the USA beating Russia. 1. The US didn’t give Ovechkin any space, and made sure to follow through on their hits during his shifts. He did have some scary shots, but overall, the US did a great job of roughing him up. 2. I loved the way Ryan Callahan played the entire game. He flew around the ice, throwing his body at any Ruski in his way. His scrappy edge frustrated a number of the Ruskis, and a successful hockey team always needs a guy like Callahan. 3. Speed certainly does kill. We were outsized, and the Russians were fast as hell too, but I thought we out skated them. We were able to put the puck into space and capitalize on our opportunities.

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Problems

Other than the assist to Joe Pavelski for our first goal, I wasn’t too impressed by Patrick Kane. He had a dumb penalty at the end of the 2nd, turned the puck over on a 4 on 3, and choked on a breakaway. He didn’t attempt any type of deke and went straight for the 5 hole. I’m not gonna be too critical, but I expected more from him.

I’m also nervous about winning face-offs. We couldn’t win any face-offs against Pavel Datsuk, so I’m a bit nervous when we have to face Canada. Datsuk is a top 5 player in the world, but we gotta win more. Possession is huge in close games.

Hat Tips

1. Joe Pavelski for scoring his 1st goal of the tournament with help from Patrick Kane.

2. Ryan Callahan for doing what he does best (hitting and pissing Ruskis off).

3. Jonathan Quick for having a great game in between the pipes with 29 saves and 5 saves in the shootout.

4. Ryan Kessler for sacrificing his body and taking a puck to the wrist.

5. Phil Kessel and Cam Fowler for putting in the 1st goal.

6. TJ Motherfucking Oshie.

Oshie put the team on his back in Shootouts and went 4 for 6. The kid stepped up to the plate and won us the game. Thank you TJ, thank you. One day can I hang out with your smokeshow wife while you practice penalty shots? Maybe?

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Team USA smoked the Slovenians the following day 5-1. The cheese heads out of Wisconsin, Phil Kessel and Joe Pavelski, stole the show. Kessel scored 3 goals, each assisted by Pavelski.

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We play tomorrow against the winner of the Czech Republic vs. Slovakia game. We’re coming for you Canada…

By: Dago Joe

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