The first installment of the annual Canada Russia Series between the Canadian Hockey League and the Russian National Team took place on Monday night in Saint John. Team Russia beat the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League representatives by a 4-3 score.
Calgary Flames prospects were in on six of the seven goals scored in the game.
2018 seventh round pick Dmitry Zavgorodnoy (of the Rimouski Oceanic) had a strong game for team Russia. He ended up with points on every single Russian goal, a great sign for his push to make the Russian World Junior team.
Zavgorodniy had a secondary assist on Alexander Khovanov’s goal to make it 1-0 Russia, scored the second Russian goal to spark their comeback from a 3-1 deficit, then had a secondary assist on Khovanov’s game-tying goal and scored the go-ahead goal to give the Russians the 4-3 victory.
Here’s Zavgorodniy’s first goal, which really showed off his ability to make key decisions and key plays at high speed:
#CHL: Khovanov shifts gears and sneaks a perfect centering feed for an even better tip by LW Dmitri Zavgorodniy (CGY 7th/2018), who beats the buzzer to make it 3-2 Team QMJHL. Zavgorodniy crushed it at last year's event and is one of the QMJHL's top scorers this season. pic.twitter.com/nQIaMbpR4k
— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) November 5, 2019
2019 first round pick Jakob Pelletier was almost as impressive, ending up with two assists on the QMJHL’s three goals.
Here’s the first of Pelletier’s two helpers.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 5, 2019
Overall, Zavgorodniy ended the game with two goals, two assists, three shots and a plus-two rating. Pelletier had two assists and zero shots. Both players are presently in the top 10 in QMJHL scoring: Zavgorodniy third, Pelletier 10th.
ESPN analyst Chris Peters heaped a lot of praise on Russia’s top trio.
Alexander Khovanov (MIN) factors in on all four goals with two and two as Russia downs the QMJHL, 4-3 to open the Canada-Russia Series. Russia's best line was an all-Q line of Khovanov, Zavgorodniy (CGY, 2 goals, 1 assist) and Sokolov (UFA,1 assist). Skilled, opportunistic line.
— Chris Peters (@chrismpeters) November 5, 2019
The Canada Russia Series sees the Quebec component conclude on Tuesday evening in Moncton. The series is a precursor to the annual World Junior Championship tournament. Zavgorodniy is a virtual lock for Team Russia, while Pelletier is making a good case for himself for a spot on Team Canada.