clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Leo Komarov is the winner in a shutout of Team Canada by Finland

Finland shut out Canada 4-0 to take the first overall spot in the IIHF World Championships, while Russia and Nikita Zaitsev easily beat Sweden 4-1.

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Finland - Canada - 4-0

Leo Komarov is not a cooperative fellow when it comes to narratives. Time after time, when the world wanted to see nothing but Patrik Laine and Auston Matthews, he made himself known. He scored in the pre-tournament friendly against the USA, he scored in Finland's round-robin win over the USA, and when the match up was supposed to be Laine vs. McDavid, it was Komarov with a goal again. This time his made it 2-0 Finland.

Laine wasn't quiet in the game. He tested his trash talk with Brad Marchand, he took advantage of a bad pinch by Morgan Rielly and very nearly scored the first goal of the game. He also got to know Corey Perry.

Аrpon Basu ‏@ArponBasu  
Why does Corey Perry keep doing Corey Perry things? He should have outgrown Corey Perry things by now, overlooking the fact he's Corey Perry

Laine took one shift off after the dirty hit, and then played in what looked like his normal fashion for the rest of the game. He isn't the fastest skater, so it was hard to tell if he was really up to full speed. He did get a few more shots off, but no points came his way.

There was some youth proving valuable. Sebastian Aho had an assist on a great give and go, and then go again off the rebound with Mika Pyorala for the third goal.

Mikko Rantanen, AHL rookie of the year, got into his first game and set up the first goal by shocking Cam Talbot with his speed up the ice, catching him lazily playing the puck and then getting an assist on the subsequent goal.

Jarno Koskiranta, who plays in St. Petersburg for SKA, finished off the Canadians with the fourth goal.

The best summation of the game is this one:

Matt Wiebe ‏@emdubwpg
Finland looks like a team. Canada looks like a collection of players with a shaky goalie.

Or maybe this one:

Or maybe just it's that Canada had a poor foundation of average goaltending and below average defence, and they couldn't build any offence out of that. They were great on the forecheck, their penalty kill was superb, but they got very few good chances to beat Mikko Koskinen, also a SKA player, and when they had them, he had the puck.

Total shots on goal were 21-19 for Canada, and Canada trailed for 34 minutes of game time.

Canada will play Sweden in the quarterfinals while Denmark gets to dance one more time, this time with the Finns.

Russia - Sweden - 4-1

In Moscow, the Russians had little trouble with a weak Swedish team. It wasn't the big stars who came late to the tournament who made the impact, it was the Russian third line, and two of the most storied names in Russian hockey.

The third line of Artemi Panarin, Vadim Shipachyov and Yevgeni Dadonov, one NHLer and two players who'd like to be, scored two unanswered goals in the first period.

In the second Pavel Datsyuk from Nikita Zaitsev made it 3-0. Zaitsev shows off his ability to switch hit and play the left point offensively.

Roman Lyubimov from Datsyuk and Sergei Mozyakin, made it 4-0. Seeing Mozyakin, one of the greatest Russian players ever, with Datsyuk has got to have the Metallurg ownership coveting a chance to see it all the time.

Sweden saved face with one goal by Mattias Ekholm in the otherwise uneventful third period.

The Russians host the Germans in Moscow in the quarterfinals, while the Czechs welcome the USA to the bigger arena there. The Canada-Sweden and Finland-Denmark games are in St. Petersburg. All quarterfinals are on Thursday, May 19 with the first pair starting at 9:15am Toronto time.