Team Canada finished their second game of the Sochi Winter Olympics this morning with a huge 6-0 win over Austria. Coach Babcock had tampered with the lines before this game, and it seemed to be the difference maker between thisgame and the Norway game. Here are some takeaways from the game in case you missed it:
1. Jeff Carter (LA Kings) scored a natural hat trick, scoring three straight goals in the second period. Carter was on a line with Jonathan Toews (Chicago Blackhawks) and Patrick Marleau (San Jose Sharks). This power line seemed to generate a lot more offense than the line Carter was on last game, (Carter, Sidney Crosby, and Chris Kunitz).
2. Roberto Luongo (Vancouver Canucks) stopped all 23 shots that he faced. Although Canada outshot Austria 46-23, Luongo still made crucial saves that resulted in a dominance by Team Canada. Luongo’s biggest threat may have been containing Michael Grabner (New York Islanders) of Austria from putting up points after coming off of a hat trick performance in their previous game. The defense fortunately contained Grabner and held him to 1 shot on goal. Carter offered the game puck to Luongo after the game, but Luongo insisted on Carter keeping it due to his magnificent natural hat trick.
3. Defense continued to produce on offense for Team Canada. Early goals for Team Canada came from Drew Doughty (LA Kings) and Shea Weber (Nashville Predators). Weber and Doughty now both have 2 goals and 1 assist during the Olympics thus far. The defense has also been taking care of their own end, only giving up 43 shots in two games.
4. The depth of Team Canada may be their best asset continuing on in the Olympics. Having a fourth line of Jamie Benn (Dallas Stars), John Tavares (New York Islanders), and Patrice Bergeron (Boston Bruins) competing against fourth lines of other teams may be the changer in upcoming games. The three of them combined accounted for 9 shots on goal.
What to look forward to:
The Crosby Show: We still haven’t seen the breakout of the Crosby line, but with more emphasis on other lines it may allow Crosby to start having shifts against weaker opposing lines.
Goaltender Decision: Babcock will have a tough decision coming soon. He will need to decide on a goalie that he feels will give Canada the best chance of winning moving forward. Canada’s next opponent is Finland, who is decorated by three elite caliber goaltenders, Tuukka Rask (Boston Bruins), Kari Lehtonen (Dallas Stars), and Antti Niemi (San Jose Sharks) . In order to compete, the goalie for Team Canada will need to have a great game to counteract the performance of whoever Finland decides to start in net.
Who will Team Canada start in net? Will we see ‘The Crosby Show’ in the next game?
**Team Canada has a day off until they face Team Finland on Sunday at 10:00AM MT**
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