It’s 4-for-4 for Canada at the Canada / Russia Super Series.
After sweeping both games in Ufa earlier this week, Canada put the cap on a perfect Russian leg of the tour on Saturday morning, scoring a 4-2 win to take both games in Omsk as well and give them a commanding 4-0 lead in the series heading back to Canada.
Brad Marchand – Canada’s Player of the Game – scored a pair of huge goals, and Sam Gagner and John Tavares also found the scoresheet as Canada moved to within one win of clinching the series.
They’ll have their first opportunity to do so on Tuesday night, when the series moves to Canada for Game 5 in Winnipeg.
The Russians came out with their best opening period since Game 1 on Monday, outshooting the Canadians 18-9 in the opening 20 minutes on Saturday, but they were unable to get a puck past Canadian goaltender Steve Mason.
Against the flow of play it was Marchand who scored first, taking a pass from defenceman Josh Godfrey at the side of the net and flipping the puck over an outstretched Sergei Bobrovsky for a 1-0 Canadian lead with just 1:44 remaining in the opening 20 minutes.
The momentum shifted to the Canadians after the Marchand goal, and it took just 1:43 of the second period to double the lead, as Gagner finished off a scramble in front of the Russian goal by sliding the puck past Bobrovsky.
The Edmonton Oilers draft pick (6th overall, 2007) scored his third of the series, while Marchand picked up his second point of the game with the lone assist.
The physical aspect of the series continued in the second period, as first it was Gagner sent head-over-heels by a hip check at the Russian blueline, and then David Perron was levelled by Vyacheslav Voynov with the puck nowhere near the Canadian forward, leading to a five-minute man advantage for the Canadians.
With time running out in the powerplay, Claude Giroux fell, but still found a way, from his backside, to pull the puck behind his back to Gagner, who fed Tavares in front for his first goal of the series.
“We went out there for that shift and they (Gagner and Giroux) both said it was coming,” the 16-year-old Tavares said. “I’ve been waiting a while, so it’s pretty good to get that first one. I’m known as a goal scorer, so I should be scoring goals.”
In Game 3 one night earlier, it was the Canadians who came out strong to start the third, scoring twice in the opening six minutes to turn a tight 3-2 game into something a little more comfortable on their way to a 6-2 victory.
On Saturday, it was the Russians who came out with the third period momentum, getting goals from Alexei Grishin and Maxim Chudinov just 26 seconds apart less than three minutes into the final frame, cutting the Canadian lead to one and igniting a pro-Russia crowd in Omsk.
But the celebrations would last just 49 seconds, as Bobrovsky kicked the rebound of a Keaton Ellerby point shot right onto the stick of Marchand, who snapped his second goal, and third point, of the game past the Russian goaltender to give the Canadians a little breathing room at 4-2.
The Russians put the pressure on down the stretch, consistently pushing their defensemen into the play to try and create offensive chances, but could not get through the Canadian defence, particularly Mason.
The Columbus Blue Jackets prospect (69th overall, 2006) turned aside 45 of the 47 shots ha faced, the second time in as many starts in the series that he has made at least 40 saves – he stopped 40 of 42 in Monday’s Game 1 victory.
Canada will now pack their bags for the longest leg of their whirlwind trip, going from Omsk to Winnipeg via Moscow, Frankfurt and Toronto ahead of Tuesday night’s Game 4 in front of what should be a raucous red-and-white-clad crowd at the MTS Centre.
01:29 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Voinov, interference
02:37 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Alexandrov, high sticking
04:34 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Hamill, interference
11:01 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Mayorov, interference
15:18 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Tavares, hooking
18:16 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Marchand (Godfrey, Gagner)
19:00 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Legein, interference
21:43 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Gagner (Marchand, Hamill)
22:46 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Zubov, tripping
23:49 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Chudinov, hooking
28:27 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Voinov, elbowing major
28:57 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Lucic, hooking
32:19 – 🇨🇦 PP GOAL – Tavares (Gagner, Giroux)
33:39 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Zubov, holding
39:33 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Giroux, hooking
40:55 – 🇷🇺 PEN – Anisimov, roughing
40:55 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Legein, slashing
42:29 – 🇷🇺 GOAL – Grishin (Glukhov, Mayorov)
42:56 – 🇷🇺 GOAL – Chudinov (Dadonov)
43:45 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Marchand (Ellerby)
51:54 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Legein, delay of game
55:44 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Lucic, hooking
W: 🇨🇦 Mason (45-47)
L: 🇷🇺 Bobrovski (27-31)
SHOTS ON GOAL
🇨🇦 9+17+5 = 31
🇷🇺 18+12+17 = 47
🇨🇦 Goaltenders: Jonathan Bernier, Leland Irving, Steve Mason. Defence: Karl Alzner (A), Drew Doughty, Keaton Ellerby, Josh Godfrey, Thomas Hickey, Logan Pyett, Luke Schenn, Ty Wishart. Forwards: Zach Boychuk, Cory Emmerton, Sam Gagner (A), Colton Gillies, Claude Giroux, Zach Hamill, Stefan Legein, Milan Lucic (C), Brad Marchand, David Perron, Brandon Sutter (A), John Tavares, Kyle Turris, Dana Tyrell.
🇷🇺 Goaltenders: Sergei Bobrovski, Semyon Varlamov, Vadim Zhelobnyuk. Defence: Yuri Alexandrov (C), Maxim Chudinov, Pavel Doronin, Alexei Grishin, Yevgeni Kurbatov, Kirill Tulupov, Ivan Vishnevski, Vyacheslav Voinov, Yegor Zubov. Forwards: Artyom Anisimov, Ruslan Bashkirov, Yevgeni Bodrov, Yevgeni Dadonov, Anton Glovatski, Mikhail Glukhov, Ilya Kablukov, Konstantin Kulikov, Maxim Mamin, Maxim Mayorov, Alexander Ryabev, Vyacheslav Solodukhin, Viktor Tikhonov, Alexander Vasyunov.
|🇨🇦 CANADA (C)||vs.||RUSSIA 🇷🇺|
(since 26 Dec 2006)
|Last Title||22 Dec 2005|
(+ 1 tie, 1 void)
|First IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. RUS)
🇷🇺 URS 4-3 CAN 🇨🇦 – 05 Jan 1975 – WJT – Winnipeg 🇨🇦
|Previous IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. RUS)
🇨🇦 CAN 6-2 RUS 🇷🇺 – 31 Aug 2007 – SS – Omsk 🇷🇺
|Last IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 6-2 RUS 🇷🇺 – 31 Aug 2007 – SS – Omsk 🇷🇺
|Next IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 8-1 RUS 🇷🇺 – 04 Sep 2007 – SS – Winnipeg 🇨🇦
Article Credit: Hockey Canada