The men's hockey tournament of the Olympics gets underway today with three games:
First game on tap is the United States and Switzerland at 3 p.m. ET. Brian Rafalski is the lone Red Wing represented in this game and joins a US team that has high expectations following a dismal Torino games. Team USA will face Jonas Hiller in net for Switzerland, a team very thin in NHL players.
Prediction: USA should win this one with ease but then again, not much comes easy against Jonas Hiller.
Second game on the schedule is Canada and Norway, which gets underway at 7:30 p.m. ET. The home team Canada is lead by Wings head coach Mike Babcock and was assembled by former Detroit great and hockey legend of the present Steve Yzerman. Roberto Luongo will start against Norway and the newly acquired Red Wing Ole-Kristian Tollefsen.
Prediction: The depth of Canada's roster should easily overpower the Norway squad.
Third and final game is Russia and Latvia at 12 a.m. ET. Pavel Datsyuk's the only guy represented for the Wings in this game and it should be an interesting game to watch as a very high powered Russian attack. Datsyuk will likely be the center on the line in between Alex Ovechkin and Alex Semin. Oh, then there's still Evgeni Malkin, Ilya Kovalchuk, Maxim Afenigenov, etc. to follow and three very solid goaltenders.
Prediction: Russia bowls over Latvia with ease.
Forward lines for USA, Canada after jump
Team Canada, per Bob McKenzie's tweet:
Up front: Nash-Crosby-Bergeron;Staal-Getzlaf-Perry;Toews-Richards-Iginla;Heatley-Thornton-Marleau; Morrow. Nash and Staal could switch
Team USA, per RDS.ca tweet:
Team USA lines: Parise-Kane-Stastny / Malone-Pavelski-Kessel / Brown-Kesler-Langenbrunner / Backes-Drury-Callahan-Ryan