First off, we're going to change things around a bit. The game thread is going to be hard for everyone to join in and be interested in with little participation. So, what we're going to do is point you over the SB Nation Hockey hub's game thread for each game. There will be a lot more people in those threads most likely and I realized how hectic my schedule is during the Olympics.
With that said, let's go into a quick recap of the games.
Game 1: USA 3-Switzerland 1
The United States played pretty well against the Swiss but should have been able to score more. Still, they walked away with a solid 3-1 victory over Jonas Hiller and team Switzerland. Bobby Ryan, David Backes and Ryan Malone were the American goal scorers and Roman Wick scored for Switzerland.
Brian Rafalski, the lone Red Wing in the game had a few bad turnovers and played kind of spotty at times but then again it's a big adjustment between playing next to Nicklas Lidstrom and Ryan Suter. Rafalski was a +1 and was credited with a shot on goal.
Game 2: Canada 8-Norway 0
Heading into the first intermission, the score was a surprising 0-0. Then Canada exploded with 8 goals over the last two periods. Jerome Iginla went curly on Norway with 3 goals and the Shark line of Heatley-Thornton-Marleau was clicking well (as they should) as Heatley put two on the board, including a blast from the left face-off dot.. Norway was good for two periods but collapsed in the third (5 goals) and were very overpowered by Canada.
The only Red Wing scheduled to play was Ole-Kristian Tollefsen (Norway, of course) but was unable to play because of an illness in his family.
Game 3: Russia 8-Latvia 2
From the drop of the puck, it was very clear that this Russian team was high powered. They struggled to play defense at times but Evgeni Nabokov is more than capable of covering for the defensive lapses. The offense was on fire, connecting passes and getting good shooting lanes on the outmatched Latvians. Alex Ovechkin scored two of the goals for Russia and worked very well with Datsyuk.
Pavel Datsyuk, the only current Red Wing assisted on an Ovechkin goal while Sergei Federov had two assists before the first period was over. Datsyuk was a shocking 35% in the face-off circle, losing 11 of 17. Expect Datsyuk to pick up his pace, when you have Alex Semin and Alex Ovechkin on your wings, you'll eventually get going.
"You're always a little nervous in the first game. I'm happy that we won," said Pavel Datsyuk. via IIHF.com