Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames scored midway through the third period and Canada rallied for a 2-2 tie against Slovakia in a World Cup of Hockey exhibition Saturday night.
Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning also scored while Dany Heatley added two assists for Canada, which went 1-1-1 in exhibition play and opens the World Cup against the defending champion United States on Tuesday night at the Bell Centre in Montréal.
Vladimír Országh of the Nashville Predators and Marián Hossa of the hometown Ottawa Senators scored for Slovakia, which lost 3-2 to Canada in the semifinals of the IIHF World Championship this May in Prague.
Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils played the full game for Canada, stopping 17 of 19 shots, as he prepares to handle the most of the workload from here on in.
Rastislav Staňa of the Washington Capitals was solid in goal for Slovakia, turning away 29 of 31 shots, including a huge pad save from in-close on Iginla with just over a minute left in four-on-four overtime. It appears the 24-year-old Staňa may have stolen the No. 1 job from incumbent starter Ján Lašák.
But he couldn’t stop everything Saturday night as Canada came out firing in the third period.
Down a goal to start the third period, head coach Pat Quinn shuffled two of his forward lines, taking Iginla off the top line with Mario Lemieux and Joe Sakic and putting him alongside Brad Richards and Simon Gagné, with St-Louis joining the Sakic unit.
The moves seemed to provide a spark, as Canada applied its best pressure of the game, throwing its weight around and creating chances. It finally paid off when Iginla scooped up a rebound in the high slot and ripped a shot that slipped under Staňa’s right arm to tie the game 2-2 at 11:02.
Lemieux then missed a glorious chance to win it with seconds remaining in the third period, whiffing on a pass across the crease while standing near an open side.
Canada deserved to be down 2-0 after a sloppy and sluggish opening period; too many players wearing the Maple Leaf caught standing still while the slick-skating Slovaks buzzed around them.
Orszagh opened the scoring 7:52 into the game, sending a wrist shot into a near empty net after Brodeur was bowled over. It was 2-0 less than a minute later when Hossa flew in on breakaway and stuffed a shot between Brodeur’s pads.
Lecavalier put Canada on the board 7:55 into the second period, taking a sensational pass from linemate Dany Heatley and rifling a wrist shot over Staňa’s right shoulder, making it 2-1.
The Canadian power play went 0-for-6 but looked dangerous with two different units midway through the third period, Lemieux missing a great chance from the slot and Heatley almost finding the five-hole from in-close moments later.
NOTES: Forwards Patrick Marleau, Ryan Smyth, Brenden Morrow and goalie José Théodore were Canada’s healthy scratches. Forwards Richard Zedník and Marián Gáborík and goalie Peter Budaj were out for Slovakia. The Canadian team will bus to Montréal on Sunday afternoon and practise Monday morning at the Bell Centre. Veteran goalie Sean Burke of the Philadelphia Flyers was at Saturday’s game. He’s been hired by CBC for studio work during the World Cup.
03:54 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Doan, high sticking double minor
07:52 – 🇸🇰 PP GOAL – Országh (Višňovský, Radivojevič)
08:43 – 🇸🇰 GOAL – Hossa (Obšut)
11:46 – 🇸🇰 PEN – Demitra, cross checking
13:58 – 🇸🇰 PEN – Demitra, hooking
19:30 – 🇸🇰 PEN – Hlinka, interference
22:27 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Redden, hooking
26:08 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Brewer, hooking
27:55 – 🇨🇦 SH GOAL – Lecavalier (Heatley, Redden)
33:35 – 🇸🇰 PEN – Bartečko, holding
37:51 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Heatley, interference
46:32 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Heatley, roughing
48:51 – 🇸🇰 PEN – team, too many players
51:02 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Iginla (Heatley, Thornton)
59:22 – 🇸🇰 PEN – Mezei, interference
W: 🇨🇦 Brodeur (17-19)
L: 🇸🇰 Staňa (29-31)
🇨🇦 Goaltenders: Martin Brodeur, Roberto Luongo. Defence: Jay Bouwmeester, Eric Brewer, Adam Foote, Scott Hannan, Ed Jovanovski, Scott Niedermayer, Wade Redden, Robyn Regehr. Forwards: Shane Doan, Kris Draper, Simon Gagné, Dany Heatley, Jarome Iginla, Vincent Lecavalier, Mario Lemieux (C), Kirk Maltby, Brad Richards, Joe Sakic, Martin St-Louis, Joe Thornton.
🇸🇰 Goaltenders: Ján Lašák, Rastislav Staňa. Defence: Zdeno Chára, Ladislav Čierny, Richard Lintner, Branislav Mezei, Jaroslav Obšut, Radoslav Suchý, Martin Štrbák, Ľubomír Višňovský. Forwards: Ľuboš Bartečko, Martin Cibák, Pavol Demitra, Miroslav Hlinka, Marián Hossa, Ladislav Nagy, Vladimír Országh, Rastislav Pavlikovský, Ronald Petrovický, Branko Radivojevič, Radovan Somík, Jozef Stümpel, Miroslav Šatan (C).
|🇨🇦 CANADA (C)||vs.||SLOVAKIA 🇸🇰|
(since 25 Aug 2004)
||21 Apr 2004|
(+ 1 tie)
|First IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. SVK)
🇸🇰 SVK 4-0 CAN 🇨🇦 – 18 Nov 1993 – THC – Lillehammer 🇳🇴
|Previous IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. SVK)
🇸🇰 SVK 2-1 CAN 🇨🇦 – 07 Feb 2004 – SC – Basel 🇨🇭
|Last IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 3-1 USA 🇺🇸 – 25 Aug 2004 – EX – Ottawa 🇨🇦
|Next IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 2-1 USA 🇺🇸 – 31 Aug 2004 – WCH – Montréal 🇨🇦