2013 IIHF World Championship: Read with two assists, Schenn with a goal, Gus remains strong

Image c/o bridgetDS

5/7/2013

Austria-Germany 0-2

Slovenia-Switzerland 1-7

A red hot Swiss team won another game against Slovenia. That was the fourth straight win for them after beating Sweden, Canada, and struggling Czech Republic. Swiss forward Hollenstein was the best player of the game recording four points (two goals and two assists).

USA-Finland 4-1

Carle 0+0, 17:48 TOI

Vaananen 0+0, 12:52 TOI, -1

Kukkonen 0+0, 8:43 TOI

Team USA strengthened their hopes for the quarterfinals after a victory over Finland. The US team is now in second place in Group B. Finland is third. 19-year-old rookie John Gibson showed strong performance allowing only one goal. The lone Finnish goal scored by Koskiranta wasn’t stoppable for the last World Junior Championship’s MVP. Craig Smith recorded a hat trick, and  Paul Stastny added two assists.

Norway-Sweden 1-5

Tollefsen 0+0, 23:38 TOI, 6 PIMs, -2

Thoresen 0+0, 18:27 TOI, 2 PIMs, -1

Gustafsson 0+0, 24:24 TOI (team high)

One could argue that Sweden’s performance so far has been quite shaky due to their loss to Switzerland and difficult comeback at the end of the third stanza against Belarus. It wasn’t an easy game for them against Norway either. Tre Kronor put up a quick two goal lead but once Norway made it a one-goal game again the Swedes started to struggle.

They found a way how to add another three goals and eventually won the game by a four goal difference. Erik Gustafsson has continued to grow since the end of the NHL regular season and he isn’t showing any signs of slowing down on the international level. Paired with the New Jersey Devils’ Henrik Tallinder, both defensemen are the best on the Swedish team. The Flyers front office should be happy about Gus’ development. He could easily play top 4 role on the 2013-2014 Flyers’ team.

Olle-Kristian Tollefsen had a disciplinary hearing for the second time in this World Championship. He missed the second game after hitting Calle Järnkrok between his legs. The incident happened in the final minute of the game and Tollefsen received a two-minute penalty in the game. The first incident occurred in the game against Denmark when he hit Mikkel Boedker from behind and he missed the game against Canada on Tuesday.

5/9/2013

Russia-France 1-2

Bryzgalov – healthy scratched

The biggest surprise of the World Championship was made by team France when they recorded a victory over one of the biggest contenders – team Russia. The day of victory became the day of defeat. The celebrations of defeating Germany in the Second World War were diminished by losing to a French underdog team which ended the 13-game winning streak of team Russia.

Slovakia-Latvia 3-5

Radivojevic 0+0, 13:00 TOI, -2

Team Slovakia also lost to struggling Latvia which has been part of the World Championship since 1997. Latvia could easily fall down to a lower level but yesterday won a crucial game against Slovakia.

Sweden-Canada 0-3

Gustafsson 0+0, 21:40 TOI (team highest)

Giroux 0+0, 2 PIMs, 54.55% FO, 16:00 TOI

Read 0+2, 17:56 TOI, +2

Schenn 1+0, 17:56 TOI, +1

Simmonds 0+0, 14:22 TOI, 2 PIMs, +1

One of the most entertaining games was played between shaky Sweden and the Canadian national team which showed its strength once again and won the game 3-0. Team Canada is now in second, just one point behind Switzerland which is the only team with a win over Canada. The Swedes seemed like they were off the track from the first to the last minute of the game.

Flyers fans should be happy seeing Luke Schenn score after nice feed from Matt Read. He put the puck behind Jhonas Enroth with a perfect, top-shelf wrist shot. Wayne Simmonds did what he does in Philadelphia all the time – perfect screening in front of Enroth. Right after the goal, another Flyer, Claude Giroux, couldn’t capitalize his chance.

“We started quickly and maybe the first power play goal brought them down and we used that for our purposes during the next couple of shifts. We were supporting each other during the whole game,” stated Matt Read who recorded two assists. “They played with more energy from the first whistle and they worked harder than we did,” admitted another Flyer Erik Gustafsson. “That’s why we lost the game, in particular in the first period,” added the young Philadelphia Flyer.

Czech Republic-Denmark 2-1 SO

Voracek 0+0, 20:17 TOI, -1

Team Czech has been struggling after grabbing the first victory over Belarus. Milan Michalek got on the scoreboard early in the third period, and Poulsen was able to tie the game just 5 minutes remaining of the third. No goals were scored in the overtime and thus the game was decided in a shootout. The Czechs got lucky while Zbynek Irgl scored twice and Jiri Hudler added another one.

Petr Hubacek: “If we advance, no one will care about the game with Denmark.”

The Czech national team was struggling to beat Denmark in regulation. Despite the shootout win, former Flyer, defensive-minded Petr Hubacek will evaluate the game when the group battles come to an end.

“A man can’t take a single game out but needs to take a look on the whole World Championship. If this loss will lead to a bad result in general, then it’ll be a shame. If we advance to the quarterfinals, no one will care about that. It’s not about one game, it’s about the whole two weeks here,” stated Hubacek after the 2-1 shootout win. “Those two points could help us to advance to the quarterfinals.”

“It was a long road to the one goal lead. Then you hope that you can protect the lead. We allowed one goal and we hoped that we could win the shootout. So there’s nothing like: “Ouch, we lost a point, and now we’re not sure if it’s not going to hurt us on our way to the quarterfinals. You will rethink this once the group battles will be finished. We need to get away with those two points,” Hubacek added.

However, this situation is quite familiar for the Czech national team. They knew it from the past. “Hope dies last. Sometimes the success is born under though conditions. Remember the World Championship in Germany where we had to defeat both Latvia and Canada to advance. I still think that we’re in a better position nowadays. On the other side it’s pretty bad situation. We need to find a way out.”

The Czech national team is in a desperate need to beat Slovenia. Otherwise it’s a dead end for Czechs. “It the same like it was before the game against Denmark. We knew that we had to win that game. But we didn’t. It’s very difficult to talk to you right after the game about the situation in general, about those little things. It’s not worth to deal with one afternoon game, but you need to deal with the whole group consisting of seven games. Now we need three points. If we can’t get them, it’ll be tough for us.”