In 17 of 18 World Championship meetings against Norway going back to 1938, Team USA has come out the winner. Norway last defeated the United States at the 1951 World Championship.
Norway enjoyed the better of play early in the first period before penalties would give the Americans opportunities on which they would capitalize. Tommy Kristiansen let fly but Keith Kinkaid made the save before surrendering a rebound that Martin Roymark turned into a backhander but was also stopped. Christian Bull’s shot made its way through traffic.
Team USA struck first with a power play goal at 8:24. With Roymark in the penalty box for holding, Charlie McAvoy sent a pass to Kane whose slapshot beat Lars Haugen on his glove side.
The American power play that was so good against Korea was also successful today. Coming into the game, the American power play was tied with Russia for first overall at a 39% efficiency. They have scored the most man advantage goals so far in the tournament on the strength of their six power-play goal effort against Korea and three here today.
Seven seconds into a penalty on Tobias Lindstrom, USA won the faceoff and McAvoy controlled the puck before finding Cam Atkinson in the faceoff circle to the right of the Norwegian net. Atkinson connected with Alex DeBrincat who sent a precision pass to Kane in front. The US captain wasted no time in sending it five-hole for the goal.
In addition to Kane’s two goals in the period, DeBrincat and Atkinson picked up two assists apiece. McAvoy, who was the star of the last game, along with Kane, scored a goal and added an assist.
Mathis Olimb had an open net to work with and possibly start the process of pulling his team back in the game. Forward Eirik Salsten took a shot that Kinkaid saved but a rebound went to Olimb who tried to shoot it cleanly in the net but instead hit the outside of the post.
A third power play goal by Dylan Larkin at 1:03 of the second period. A wrist shot found its way through traffic and into the back of the net. The goal was unassisted.
Norway got on the board at the 7:00 mark of the second Tobias Lindstrom sent a touch pass from behind the net out to Kristian Forsberg.
Three more Team USA goals extended their insurmountable lead. Alec Martinez blasted a Larkin pass in at 10:38. Haugen was replaced in net by Henrik Haukeland. At 16:40, a beautiful passing play led to an Anders Lee goal. Johnny Gaudreau showed speed getting to the puck to Dylan Larkin who went two-on-none on Haukeland sending the saucer to Lee who greeted the new netminder with his third tournament goal. Finally, Atkinson scored at 19:08 with assists from Nick Jensen and Kane.
On the play Kane tied a record for most assists in a tournament for an American player, tying Max Pacioretty (2012) and Craig Smith (2013).
In the third period, Scott Darling replaced Kinkaid.
Colin White and Neal Pionk closed out scoring in the third period. Nick Bonino, playing in his first game of the 2018 tournament, added assists on both goals.
Norway scored after earning a two-man advantage for 1:53. They scored when Ken Andre Olimb thread the needle and with a cluster of skaters in front, the puck went through everyone and between Darling’s pads. Norway regained some of its early first period form. Mathis Olimb scored 1:04 later tapping a loose puck that lay unclaimed in the crease.
With the win, Team USA remains atop Group B and next heading into an important fame against the equally high flying Finland. Norway now faces a must win game against Korea.
"It's tough to take a night off," said Dylan Larkin of the challenges ahead. "We have to get ready for Finland, and they've been playing well, so that began today against Norway. We came out prepared from the start and didn't take them lightly."