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Olympic Roundup: Tomas Tatar Scores for Slovakia, Canada and Russia Get Tested

February 13th, 2014 at 3:42 PM
By Frank Vajcner

Team USA opened up Olympic play with a statement.

The silver medalists at Vancouver shellacked Slovakia 7-1 in their opener today thanks to a six-goal outburst in the second period.

The goal spree came after the Detroit Red Wings' Tomas Tatar tied the game 24 seconds into the second period. The Americans then responded with six unanswered goals, two from Paul Stastny, and Jonathan Quick stopped 22 shots in the win.

"We talked about how we're going to play and how we're going to keep playing, keep going forward, and I loved how we responded not just with the next shift and not just with the goals we got there, but that 10 minutes of hockey there," Team USA coach Dan Bylsma said. "We scored some goals, got the second, third and fourth goal, but it was about how we played. We had our best shifts there in the second period playing in the offensive zone. We had some exceptional shifts by hemming them in. That's the type of team we are and that's the kind of team we're going to have to be."

Russia got a tougher than expected test from Slovenia, but the host nation pulled out a 5-2 victory. Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk did not score, but Russia's captain said that the feeling was tense until Valeri Nichushkin scored to put the Russians ahead 4-2 in the third.

Team Canada, coached by Mike Babcock, struggled to put Norway away in a 3-1 victory. Drew Doughty's goal at 1:47 of the third helped put the game out of reach.

Finland withstood a hat trick from Michael Grabner, and defeated Austria 8-4 in the first game of the day.

Tags: Detroit, Detroit Red Wings, Hockey, Mike Babcock, NHL, Pavel Datsyuk

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