Pavelski enjoying linemates on Team USA

Pavelski enjoying linemates on Team USA
February 16, 2014, 2:00 pm
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Joe Pavelski along with linemates Phil Kessel and James van Riemsdyk have a combined 15 points in three games. (USATSI)

ProHockeyTalk

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The Olympics have seen some stellar line combinations, and the American trio of Phil Kessel, Joe Pavelski, and James van Riemsdyk ranks among the best.

If not the best.

The trio has a combined 15 points in three games and Kessel leads the Olympic scoring race with seven points — but it’s the “new” guy on the line, Pavelski, that’s perhaps the most crucial element. Kessel and van Riemsdyk have a natural chemistry given they’re linemates in Toronto, so the San Jose center deserves credit for adapting to their style of play and taking a page from the book of Tyler Bozak — Kessel and JVR’s usual center with the Leafs.

“It’s nice coming in, knowing that him and JVR play together, and knowing what type of player Bozak is,” Pavelski said following Sunday’s 5-1 win over Slovenia. “It’s easy for me to come in and fill that role, read off them.”

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