By Mike Meyer
The United States not only put themselves in the hole early in the game, but in the tournament also. After a goal against the United States on the first shot from Marian Gaborik, Team Europe never looked back.
Dustin Byfuglien, arguably the United States number one defenseman, was a late scratch before the game against Team Europe. “We made the decision before the game this was our best lineup,” Tortorella said to the media. The game was certainly missing a lot of intensity from the United States squad and could have used the experience, defensive talent, and certainly offensive talent as well from Dustin Bufuglien.
Make no mistake, Team Europe was on their game early through the first 60 minutes, and defense in the final 20 while the United States seemed to finally wake up. Efficient in their scoring and opportunities by scoring on 3 of their first 9 shots on net against goaltender Jonathan Quick. Effective on their defense and in net as Slovakian netminder Jarolav Halak stopped all 35 shots on net. However, the United States seemed to have come out flat and never reached second gear throughout the game. The attempted shots from Forward and Defensive players alike were not efficient, creative, and rarely were not dangerous.
For the United States, they are now forced to play to win the last two games of this set. Tuesday against Team Canada will not come easy and is a MUST win and dig deep moment already in this tournament. Though Coach ‘Torts’ may think that keeping Byfuglien and Palmeri might work best for his plans, what may work best against the rest of the opposition May to just do the obvious and throw your best players out on the ice and stay out of it.