It’s been Finland’s year. And, as the only undefeated team at these World Championships, they’re now one win away from claiming yet another title – all while being led by the expected second overall pick of the upcoming NHL draft.
In their way stands Canada. But of course, in their way stood Canada in the last game of the preliminaries, when both teams were fighting for the top of Group B: and Finland wiped the floor with them, winning 4-0 and ending Canada’s own unbeaten streak.
At 11:45 a.m. MT, they meet up for one more game.
Team vs. Team
|Team||Record||Goals For||Goals Against||Shots on Goal||PP%||PK%||PIM||SV%|
These are the two best teams of the tournament, so it’s fitting to see them both playing for gold. They’re both at the top for scoring goals, and have been extremely good at keeping the puck out of their net. Finland doesn’t quite shoot and score as much, but they’ve still been deadly – though both are fairly matched in regards to both special teams and goaltending, Finland shutting Canada out earlier aside.
|Team||Goals||Assists||Points||Shots on Goal||PIM||Average TOI||SV%|
|Canada||Taylor Hall (6)||Connor McDavid (8)||Derick Brassard (11)||Taylor Hall (26)||Brendan Gallagher (12)||D: Morgan Rielly (19:54)
F: Ryan O’Reilly (17:16)
|Calvin Pickard (97.14%)|
|Finland||Patrik Laine (7)||Mikael Granlund (8)||Patrik Laine
Mikael Granlund (12)
|Patrik Laine (33)||Mikko Koivu
Antti Pihlstrom (12)
|D: Jusso Hietanen (20:20)
F: Mikko Koivu (19:01)
|Juuse Saros (100.00%)|
While Canada’s roster is made up of almost exclusively NHLers, Finland has just eight, and one of them is Niklas Backstrom.
That said, Laine is clearly crushing it, and it hurts me that if Kings had just been able to hold on to a 3-0 lead in their final game of the season that they needed to win in order to clinch the Pacific Division, well, just, dang, you know? Or, hell, if Karri Ramo hadn’t let in that incredulously awful goal from Dustin Byfuglien in the fourth game of the season. Or millions of any other instances, probably. Oh well.
Anyway, this should be a pretty good game. And once it’s over, Team Canada co-General Manager – and regular ol’ Calgary Flames General Manager – Brad Treliving will have one less thing to see to.