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Team USA Set to Face Host Country Russia in Game Two of Group Play

February 14th, 2014 at 7:39 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

The United States Men's Olympic Hockey team easily handled Slovakia on Thursday, winning 7-1. Their second game on Saturday morning will be against a favored Russian team. 

'WorldJuniorHockeyChampionships2005_25' photo (c) 2005, mashleymorgan - license:

In a rather surprising move, Team USA head coach Dan Bylsma named Jonathan Quick the starting goaltender for Game two against Russia. Many were speculating Ryan Miller would get the nod in net. 

Team USA had no trouble scoring on Thursday, but a much stiffer test will be in store against Russia. Russia has a high-powered offense, led by the likes of dynamic goal scorer Alexander Ovechkin, Stanley Cup champion Evgeni Malkin, and Kontinental Hockey League star Ilya Kovalchuk. Their top line is slated to be Ovechkin, Malkin, and Alexander Semin.

No slouches themselves after a 7-1 win against Slovakia, the United States will feature Phil Kessel, who had a goal and two assists in the first game. The United States had six different players score goals against Slovakia, with Paul Stastny leading the way with two goals.

Healthy scratches for the game against Russia will be defenseman Justin Faulk, center Derek Stepan, and third goalie Jimmy Howard. 

This article was written by Sabres 101 writer Richard Wade. 

Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Sabres, Hockey, NHL, Olympic, United States

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