Slovakia Wins, Germany Falls At Worlds
Tomas Kopecky's two goals help Slovaks win second straight game at World Championship while Germany can't hang with Sweden.
Slovakia 4, Kazakhstan 2
Tomas Kopecky scored his first two goals of the tournament, including the game-winner, to give Slovakia their second straight victory after starting out with consecutive losses.
Kazakhstan came out strong in the third period, tying the score 2-2 on Konstantin Pushkaryov's marker at the 3:15 mark. But the Slovakians controlled the pace from there, leading to Kopecky's first goal, a one-timer from the right faceoff circle. The Florida Panthers winger closed out the game near the end of the period, scoring his second of the game with just 13 seconds remaining in the third following a too-many-men penalty to Kazakhstan, which has now lost its first four games.
The Slovakians appeared to be well on their way to a victory when Dominik Granak opened the scoring just 1:18 into the game, taking a pretty Miroslav Satan pass from behind the net and beating Vitali Yeremeyev. But Yevgeny Rymarev replied for Kazakhstan later in the period when he tucked the puck around the right post from behind the Slovakian goal, fooling goalie Jan Laco.
The Slovaks would take control in the second, outshooting the Kazakhs 11-5. But despite the shot discrepancy, the Slovaks could only muster Libor Hudacek's power-play goal with 2:11 remaining in the period, which gave them a 2-1 lead.
Slovakia will look to make it three straight wins on Saturday against Belarus.
Sweden 5, Germany 2
Henrik Zetterberg assisted on two of Sweden's goals, including Erik Karlsson's game-winner, and Loui Eriksson regained the tournament scoring lead as the host nation Swedes remained undefeated following an easy win over Germany.
The Swedes overmatched Germany for most of the game and it appeared they might earn an easy victory when Marcus Kruger put a pass from Gabriel Landeskog behind German keeper Dennis Endras just 1:17 into the game. Germany unexpectedly got back into the game when Philip Gogulla took Kai Hospelt's pass from behind the Swedish net, beating Viktor Fasth with just one second remaining in the period.
Perhaps awakened by the late German goal, Sweden stormed out of the gates in the second, overwhelming Endras with shots before Viktor Stalberg gave Sweden the lead with his third goal of the World Championship, tying him with seven other players for the tournament lead.
Sweden padded that lead just 96 seconds later with Nikolai Goc serving a hooking penalty for Germany. Zetterberg fed Karlsson at the right point before the Norris Trophy candidate fired a rising shot into Germany's net. Loui Eriksson's assist on the power-play marker gave the Stars winger seven points for the tournament, moving him past Evgeni Malkin for sole possession of the tournament lead.
Patrick Reimer would score for Germany before the end of the second period, but Niklas Persson and Johan Franzen replied in the third period for Sweden, which outshot the Germans by a 45-17 margin in front of their home crowd.
Sweden will next face Russia on Friday in what could be a battle of undefeated teams. The Russians are currently 3-0 in the tournament and will face Denmark on Thursday.