LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- With a smaller group for the first time, United States coach Don Lucia said Tuesday’s practice allowed him to really drill into his players how he wanted them play in all facets of the game.
"We got a lot accomplished today," he said after the 60-minute workout. "We had good tempo with our group. We tried to do some concepts with our guys, the way we want to try to play. It was the first time we've had the opportunity to do that. We got a lot of repetitions with that many guys on the ice. All in all, a good practice."
With six lines of forwards and five pairs of defensemen, it was tough for him to keep his eyes on everybody at all times, but Lucia said one line that continued to stand out was the trio of Daniel O'Regan centering Nicolas Kerdiles and Riley Barber.
"When you look at Kerdiles and O'Regan and Barber, that's three guys we feel pretty good about as a power-play unit," Lucia said. "The rest is a work in progress."
The practice mainly focused on special teams play, with Lucia taking time to implement how he wanted his teams to react to situations on the power play as well as the penalty kill. But there was time to work on other concepts, as well.
"We had an opportunity to work on our neutral-zone concepts, attack patterns, little forechecks in smaller areas, 3-on-2 and then a full forecheck, which was a little chaotic at times," he said. "The key was getting our guys lots of reps, in neutral-zone defense, specialty team work. With one hour and that many players, we got a lot done today."
Here is how the lines and pairings looked during the skate Tuesday: