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World Championship

US, Canada Victorious In Openers On Day 2 At Worlds

Saturday, 05.04.2013 / 5:00 PM / World Championship
By Glenn Odebralski  -
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US, Canada Victorious In Openers On Day 2 At Worlds

The United States and Canada kicked off their World Championship play with scares as they trailed early but picked up three points in the end against pesky Austria and Denmark teams.

In the late games, it was a goaltending battle as Finland earned a 2-0 victory over Slovakia and Sweden outlasted the Czech Republic 2-1.


HELSINKI, Finland - The Americans found themselves trailing early as Austria struck twice in a forty second span less than six minutes in but thanks to Colorado blueliner Erik Johnson and Panthers forward Nick Bjugstad, struck for four goals in the second period on their way to a 5-3 victory.

Austria got on the board 4:58 into the contest off an United States turnover as Manuel Latusa scored. Daniel Welser scored on a rebound shot 40 seconds later as the underdogs caught the USA off guard.

The power play got the US on the board where Calgary's David Moss scored midway through the first. Then Bjugstad and Johnson connected to knot the game at two 3:38 into the second. The Cats 2010 first round pick (19th overall) kept the puck in at the blue line before sliding it over to Johnson. The defenseman sent a low shot from the center of the ice that tied the game.

Tim Stapleton gave the US their first lead of the game 9:31 in and then Bjugstad helped set up the eventual game-winner 1:26 later where Aaron Palushaj found the back of the net. Austria would get to within one with a breakaway goal in the wide-open second but Johnson scored his second of the game on another power play to restore the two-goal cushion with 1:28 left in the period.

After the offensive outburst of a second, the teams failed to find the scoresheet in the third for the 5-3 final. Bjugstad was strong while centering the fourth line with Palushaj and Danny Kristo on the wings. He picked up the two assists and finished a plus-1 despite playing in a low 10:39 of ice time.



STOCKHOLM, Sweden - The underdogs got on the scoreboard first but Canada kept buzzing the Denmark zone and pulled out a 3-1 victory to open their World Championship play as Colorado's Matt Duchene led the way with two goals.

Carolina captain Eric Staal took an early penalty and the Danes struck just 34 seconds into it and 4:50 into the game as M Green's shot beat Edmonton netminder Devan Dubnyk. That would all the offense they could find however as he stopped the other 24 shots to record the victory.

Denmark actually held the lead for half the game before Duchene scored the first of his two pretty goals, outwaiting Simon Nielsen before flipping a backhand into the net with 9:45 to play in the second. They quickly capitalized on the momentum and scored the eventual game-winner 1:23 later as Tampa Bay sniper Steven Stamkos netted a power play goal 35 seconds into a slashing penalty.

Duchene gave Canada the two-goal cushion 7:03 into the third after making a deke around a defenseman and finding the back of the net. Panthers defenseman Brian Campbell was paired with Philadelphia blueliner Luke Schenn on Canada's second pair and recorded four shots and a plus-2 on 20:19 of ice time, the third most for a Canada player.



HELSINKI, Finland - The Fins got on the board 11:28 into the game and that's all Antti Raanta would need as he turned aside all 36 shots from Slovakia on the way to a 2-0 victory in the second game for both teams.

Juhamatti Aaltonen scored the first goal of the game and it looked like that would be it for either side as Raanta and Slovakia's Rastislav Stana turned in big performances. Raanta was the busier of the two netminders, turning aside 15, 12 and nine shots in each of the periods while Stana saw three, 14 and four shots on his end.

Petri Kontiola gave Finland a 2-0 lead 2:09 into the third period to allow the Fins to pick up five out of a possible six points in the first two games. Forward Tomas Kopecky finished with three shots and a minor penalty on 15:42 of ice time.



STOCKHOLM, Sweden - After being upset in their first game of the tournament, Sweden was in a need for the points against the Czech Republic and they scored twice in the second period and held on to do so.

Sweden defenseman Henrik Tallinder actually took a late checking to the head/neck area late in the first period for a Czech power play but it was Sweden who had control as they outshot the Czechs 15-3 and a 1-0 advantage. If not for the stellar play of former Panthers Alexander Salak, the game might have gotten out of hand early. Jimmie Ericsson got the gold and blue on the board 10:14 into the game.

Sweden made it a 2-0 advantage with the eventual game-winner just 3:38 into the second period as Tallinder scored with a wrist shot from the point. The Czechs got to within one as Jiri Hudler redirected a shot past Jhonas Enroth with 7:20 left in the second but that was it. The rest of the way it was the battle of the goaltenders.

Panthers netminder Jacob Markstrom served as Enroth's backup in the victory while forward Tomas Fleischmann finished with 15:54 of ice time in the loss.





1 MTL 62 41 16 5 171 135 87
2 NYI 64 41 21 2 205 179 84
3 NYR 61 38 17 6 192 152 82
4 TBL 64 38 20 6 210 171 82
5 DET 61 35 15 11 180 159 81
6 PIT 62 36 17 9 181 155 81
7 WSH 64 34 20 10 188 159 78
8 BOS 62 31 22 9 165 161 71
9 FLA 63 28 22 13 154 178 69
10 PHI 63 27 25 11 168 183 65
11 OTT 60 27 23 10 171 163 64
12 NJD 63 26 27 10 141 164 62
13 CBJ 62 26 32 4 160 196 56
14 CAR 61 24 30 7 142 162 55
15 TOR 63 25 33 5 170 193 55
16 BUF 63 19 39 5 123 212 43


N. Bjugstad 63 22 16 -8 38
J. Huberdeau 60 9 27 4 36
J. Jokinen 62 6 28 0 34
A. Ekblad 63 10 23 8 33
B. Boyes 61 11 21 9 32
J. Jagr 59 12 19 -9 31
J. Hayes 54 17 10 -5 27
B. Campbell 63 3 20 3 23
A. Barkov 52 10 12 -4 22
T. Fleischmann 52 7 14 12 21
R. Luongo 23 16 11 .920 2.40
A. Montoya 5 6 2 .891 2.98 is the official Web site of the Florida Panthers. Florida Panthers and are trademarks of the Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Florida Panthers Hockey Club, Ltd and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.