Team Canada

Canada sneaks past Team USA

[Photo: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette]

[Photo: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette]

Malcolm Subban silenced his critics with a dominant performance against Team USA, shutting the door in a tightly contested game.

Canada would eventually win 2 – 1 on the back of Subban’s 36 saves and a pair of goals from Ryan Strome and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in the first period.

Captain Nugent-Hopkins continued his impressive form for Canada, opening the scoring and adding to his tournament leading point total.

Strome doubled the lead soon after, scoring his fourth goal in Ufa, after Brett Ritchie dished a pass out front from behind the net.

It was a definite goaltending duel, both goalies keeping the game scoreless in the second period, while the referees seemed intent on letting the teams play; just four minor penalties in the first forty minutes.

Jacob Trouba made things interesting in the third as he scored midway into the final period on a powerplay with Strome in the box for a delay of game penalty.

But the game turned sour in the final 10 minutes, Jake McCabe given a penalty for Checking to the head and a 10-minute misconduct, before Tyler Bigs and Trouba also ended up in the box.

Ryan Hartman continued the parade to the box for Team USA, going off for another checking to the head minor and a 10-minute misconduct, but with extended 5 on 3 opportunities Canada was unable to break past USA goalie John Gibson.

Wasting their chance, it was Canada on the backfoot for the final minutes as both Jonathan Huberdeau and Nugent-Hopkins found themselves penalized, but Subban was able to stand tall in the final moments for a 2 – 1 Canada win.

Gibson made a number of key saves and continued his strong performance in UFA, he had 30 saves in the loss.

Subban and Gibson were players of the game for their respective teams, underlining the strong goalie performances of the pair.

Mooseheads Watch

Jonathan Drouin & Nathan MacKinnon [2 Shots] – The two of them started on the second line with Ryan Strome, but Head Coach Spott mixed things up throughout the game. The two played well and had bright spots, but it was a very quiet game by their standards. Just two shots mustered over 60 minutes between the two.

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Henry is a writer for Sportstream.ca  and part of the The Sports Show on 88.1 CKDU  every Thursday Morning at 9am. You can follow him on twitter at @HenryWhitfield , where he live tweets his thoughts during each Mooseheads game.

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Canada Battles past Slovakia

 

[Credit: The Canadian Press]

[Credit: The Canadian Press]

By: Henry Whitfield

A sluggish start and a two ejections put Team Canada behind early on Friday morning, but on the back of a big second period they battled to a 6 – 3 win over Slovakia.

Coming off a 9 – 3 win in their opening game against Germany, Canada’s offence was no where to be found in the first period, falling two goals behind early on.

Marko Dano opened the scoring for Slovakia, finishing off a play by Matus Matis to put the underdogs ahead.

Forward J.C. Lipon was then ejected midway through the period, thrown out for checking to the head and Slovakia took no time to capitalize on the major penalty, Tomas Mikus putting the puck past Malcolm Subban.

Ryan Strome answered back at the start of the second, but it was another ejection that gave Slovakia the edge.

Anthony Camara was given a game misconduct for charging after a crunching hit on Dano and on the ensuing penalty it was Dano who scored his second of the game and restored the 2 goal lead for Slovakia.

Moments after scoring it was Dano who turned from hero to villain, getting a penalty for spearing and it was the moment that spurred the Canadians into action.

Morgan Reilly and Ty Rattie scored back to back power play goals to tie the game up and Mark Sheifele gave the Canadians a lead with less than a minute left in the second, completing the comeback.

In the third period Captain Ryan Nugent-Hopkins sealed the win and Strome scored his second of the game, giving the Canadians a 6 – 3 win over a plucky Slovakia.

Subban picked up the win with 25 saves and while he allowed three goals, he can’t be blamed for allowing two goals against on two five minute major power plays in the first two periods.

Despite the win, the story of the game will surround the two ejections and while reporters and fans alike were quick to jump on the referees it will be up to the off-ice officials whether suspensions are handed down to Camara and Lipon.

**[Updated: IIHF announced there will be no supplementary discipline for Anthony Camara after his game misconduct and ejection]**

Mooseheads Watch

Nathan MacKinnon [3 Shots] – Not a lot of ice time in the first two periods, but was reunited with Jonathan Drouin and picked up three shots in the third period. His best play of the night was when he dragged the puck through a defenders legs on a play behind the net.

Jonathan Drouin [1 Assist, +1, 2 Shots] – Continuing to be a spark plug and picked up an assist on Ryan Strome’s first goal of the night. When reunited with Mackinnon, he really seemed to pick up his game.

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Henry is a writer for Sportstream.ca  and part of the The Sports Show on 88.1 CKDU  every Thursday Morning at 9am. You can follow him on twitter at @HenryWhitfield , where he live tweets his thoughts during each Mooseheads game.

Canada cruises past Germany

(Photo: The Canadian Press)

(Photo: The Canadian Press)

[Photo Credit: The Canadian Press]

Canada opened up their Ufa adventure with a 9 – 3 win over Germany to open their World Junior Tournament.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins stoked the offensive fire with a five point game, while Jonathan Huberdeau chipped in with three points of his own.

The Canadians overcame some sloppy play and a parade of penalties to overpower the underdog Germans, getting off to a winning start.

Xavier Ouellette opened the scoring for Canada, putting a power-play goal past the Germany goalie just three minutes into the game and Nugent-Hopkins doubled the lead moments later.

Germany would cut the lead to 2 – 1 with 31 seconds left in the first, Tobias Rieder clawing one back on the power-play.

The second period was all Canada, Mark Sheifele scored twice, with Jonathan Hubedeau, Ty Rattie and Ryan Strome all adding goals to answer a pair of German goals and lead 7 – 3 heading to the third period.

Icing it in the third period, Halifax Mooseheads star Jonathan Drouin added a highlight reel goal and Tyler Wotherspoon scored  rare goal to set a final 9 – 3 scoreline.

Captain Nugent-Hopkins was named Player of the Game.

Mooseheads Watch

Jonathan Drouin [1 Goal, 1 Assist, + 2] – Drouin impressed on his 1 goal, 1 assist performance. His assist coming from behind the net on a typical set-up, finding Ryan Strome alone in front, but his goal was the icing on the cake. He picked up a Scott Harrington slap-pass and dangled past a helpless German Goalie, showing his tremendous skill.

Nathan MacKinnon [1 Assist, + 1] – MacKinnon added an assist, but with much less ice-time his best moments came on the forecheck, as he added energy on a line with Anthony Camara and Ty Rattie.

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Henry is a writer for Sportstream.ca  and part of the The Sports Show on 88.1 CKDU  every Thursday Morning at 9am. You can follow him on twitter at @HenryWhitfield , where he live tweets his thoughts during each Mooseheads game.

Golden Ticket for Mooseheads Duo

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By: Henry Whitfield

(Photo Credit: Richard LaFortune)

With a packed Metro Centre awaiting news anxiously, the final cuts were made to the Canadian World Junior team and both Mooseheads were left standing.

The dynamic duo of Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin have been wowing crowds at the Metro Centre for a while now, this time they will have a chance to wow the world when they make the trip to Ufa, Russia.

The NHL lockout meant that spots were even more limited than usual, especially for a pair of 17 year olds, but MacKinnon and Drouin did enough to impress Team Canada and beat out Daniel Catenacci, Mark McNeil, Hunter Shinkaruk and Tom Wilson for the final forward spots.

Next up for Team Canada will be a warm up game against Finland on December 20th, before meeting defending World Junior Champion Sweden in the final tune up before the tournament kicks off on Boxing Day.

Canada will open the tournament with games against Germany, Slovakia and continental rival Team USA before a tough final group game against Russia.

[Notes: Czech Republic Forward Marty Frk will also be in Ufa, representing his home country – – The Mooseheads prevailed in a 3 – 1 win over the PEI Rockets, despite missing their top three forwards, lead by rookie Dominic Beauchemin’s two goal performance – – The Mooseheads host Acadie Bathurst Titans Friday night before heading on the road for a pair of games]

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Henry is a writer for Sportstream.ca  and part of the The Sports Show on 88.1 CKDU  every Thursday Morning at 9am. You can follow him on twitter at @HenryWhitfield , where he live tweets his thoughts during each Mooseheads game.