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Brian Rafalski nets two, US beats Norway 6-1

Phil Kessel started the scoring off early for the US, less than three minutes into the first to be exact, putting the US of A out to a 1-0 lead.  Shortly after, Ryan Callahan launched a shot on net that bounced off Norway goaltender Pal Grotnes, to the stick of Chris Drury and into the back of the net to put the US up 2-0.  David Backes, who may very well be playing the most physical game on the States' side of the puck, picked up the secondary assist.

In the second period Patrick Kane padded the lead with one more goal, but Norway showed some signs on life when, while on the PK, they managed to charge into the US zone on a 2-on-1 to slip one past Ryan Miller, closing the gap to two. 

Good ole Pittsburgh native Ryan Malone knocked one out of mid air in the third to pick up his second goal of the games, ultimately setting up what would be a firey third period for the US.  Before all was said and done, Brian Rafalski tagged on two more less than three minutes apart to put the final at 6-1.

Overall the US looked like a completely different team in each period of play.  They came out fired up in the first and really looked as if they were going to run away with the game early.  For all intents and purpose, they did with a quick 3-0 lead.  With the exception of Kane's goal in the second, play seemed to stall a bit and it almost looked as if Norway would try to slip back into the swing of things.  It was more than obvious by the time the third period rolled around that an all-out attack would ultimately stand as the strong suit for this team.

The one area of concern, specifically if they plan on attempting to beat Russia or Canada, is the defense.  On more than one occasion (or perhaps even half a dozen), the US defensemen were caught pinching on the forecheck.  In some cases forwards were even dropping back on defense to cover (often late on the play I might add).  This led to countless two-on-one chances for Norway, one of which led to that shorthanded goal in the second.

Canada and Switzerland up next at 7:30, followed by Russia and Slovakia at midnight.