Team USA finally scored some goals after some serious offensive impotency through its previous games. They shellacked Kazakhstan 10-0 this afternoon in their first game in the regulation round. PHT’s Joe Yerdon did a nice job of explaining USA Hockey’s predicament for the Hockey Worlds blog.
While being sent to the relegation round is embarrassing enough, as long as the Americans can avoid finishing third or fourth in the relegation round they’ll be all right. Doing that means they’ll get to stay in the IIHF top division with their more common opponents like Sweden, Finland, Russia and Canada. If they should continue to play poorly, however, and finish third or fourth they would be sent down to Division I and would have to win their way back up to the top division.
Matt Gilroy scored a hat trick and Brandon Dubinsky piled up one goal and four assists for the U.S. in a nice showing for two young New York Rangers. The US scored early and often in the game, with T.J. Oshie starting things off only 55 seconds into the contest followed 18 seconds later by Kyle Okposo. The team ended the first period with a 4-0 lead before piling on five more in the second and then one in the final frame.
Sure, they’re really just playing for pride at this point and scoring 10 goals on Kazakhstan is like dominating Madden on its rookie difficulty, but the US will take what they can get in what’s been a tough tournament.