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Olympic replay: USA vs. Norway

by Derek Jory / Vancouver Canucks
February 18, 2010

Kesler

USA vs. NORWAY

Prior to puck drop in the first game of the day, the in-house interviewer caught up with the Kesler family, all seven members of them.

Mike Kesler, Ryan's dad, looked like he could host American Idol he was so relaxed on the mic. He gave a huge shoutout the fans in Vancouver as the best in the NHL.

Ryan's wife Andrea also shared her thoughts on Ryan playing in the Olympics and on the American squad. On her lap, Ryan and Andrea's daughter Makayla. She was showing her US pride with a red, white and blue soother.

FIRST PERIOD

U-S-A, U-S-A, U-S-A.

Patriotic American chants were as loud as ever in a two-goal opening period for Team USA.

The Americans lead Norway 2-0 off goals from Phil Kessel and Chris Drury. Kessel’s goal, which began the scoring 2:39 into the first, had him put perfect English on a wrist shot that beat Norwegian netminder Pal Grotnes top shelf.

Drury doubled the US lead when he converted a rebound off a point shot from Ryan Callahan.

Kesler, still skating with Jamie Langenbrunner and Dustin Brown, was as dangerous as any forward with two good scoring chances; odds are that trio will come together for its first goal before this game is over.

Thanks to some defensive lapses, Norway had three scoring chances forcing Ryan Miller to be sharp early.

SECOND PERIOD

Whether it was pity or sportsmanship, the predominantly American-pro crowd turned Norwegian for the second period.

A “Let’s go Norway” chant burst out of nowhere just as the frame began, that was followed up with intense oohs and ahhs each time the underdog red, white and blue had a scoring chance.

Comprised of zero NHLers to USA’s 23, Team Norway used the crowd boost to score its first goal of the tournament, a laser wrist shot from Marius Holtet, shorthanded, to cut the American lead to 3-1.

Patrick Kane had the lone US goal in the period.

THIRD PERIOD

The final 20 minutes was all about Norway's comeback attempt as the team from the Land of the Midnight Sun refused to roll over. Norway stayed competitive with the US, it just didn’t have the firepower to dent the scoreboard any further.

Already out of reach for Norway, the game leaned heavily in favour of the Americans after Ryan Malone, one of six Ryans on Team USA, put in a rebound off a Jack Johnson shot to make the score 4-1.

Brian Rafalski scored the final American goals in a 6-1 final.

The US improves to 2-0 with the win, yet this was another less than perfect game for our southern neighbours.

Kesler finished pointless for the second straight game. He had two shots on net.

On a side note, after two days of eating $6 egg salad sandwiches with rings on the them (not really), it was time for a change. I’m happy to report that I just ate my first non-Olympic branded sammy. It was delicious, especially because I snuck it in.

Derek 1 Olympics 0

Wait, I paid $5 for a water yesterday.

Derek 1 Olympics 1

Click here for Kesler's thoughts on the US improving to 2-0

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