Canada’s victory over Switzerland seemed more like a Philadelphia Flyers win over Switzerland, as the team’s top stars combined to defeat the Swiss 4-1 in a World Championship tune-up, winning Canada the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
A pair of early goals from Canada got Swiss keeper Leonardo Genoni very busy early, first with a Chris Lee slot snipe, followed by a Sean Couturier laser from Flyers teammate Wayne Simmonds 86 seconds later, giving Canada a 2-0 lead after just 5:42 of play. Flyers captain Claude Giroux notched an unassisted goal just under eight minutes later, further extending Genoni’s misery. Pius Suter would break the shutout attempt for Canada’s Chad Johnson by poking in a rebound, setting the score at 3-1 after one period.
Genoni sharpened up in the second period, but Canada jumped at their first power play opportunity of the game with a goal from Simmonds, with Giroux notching an assist, giving the Flyers trio five points on the night. Johnson would trade out for Calvin Pickard midway through the second, who stopped all seven shots faced for a clean sheet. Genoni remained perfect in the third, despite being peppered with 15 shots each in the second and third period, but the early onslaught and tight defence from Canada was too much for the Eisgenossen to overcome.
With the win, Canada wins back the International Hockey Lineal Championship, the 63rd such title in their history, reclaiming their place on the throne for the first time since November. In fact, their last win as champions was over the Swiss, a 3-0 victory at the 2016 Deutschland Cup; today’s win gives Canada a fourth straight IHLC victory over Switzerland. This game actually marked a tiebreaker of sorts over the IHLC this season, as both Canada and Switzerland entered the game with seven IHLC wins apiece this year. The victory most importantly means that Canada will start the 2017 World Championships in Paris with the IHLC, meaning their first defence will be on opening night versus the Czechs.
04:16 – GOAL – Lee (MacKinnon)
05:42 – GOAL – Couturier (Simmonds)
09:41 – PEN – Johnson, delay of game
13:06 – GOAL – Giroux
13:31 – PEN – Card, delay of game
18:48 – GOAL – Suter (Almond)
34:45 – PEN – Untersander, holding
36:38 – PP GOAL – Simmonds (Skinner, Giroux)
42:53 – PEN – Almond, hooking
54:29 – PEN – Demers, cross checking
57:23 – PEN – Romy, slashing
W: Johnson (9-10), Pickard (7-7)
L: Genoni (37-41)
SHOTS ON GOAL
11+15+15 = 41
7+6+4 = 17
Goaltenders: Chad Johnson, Calvin Pickard. Defence: Tyson Barrie, Mike Card, Calvin de Haan, Jason Demers, Chris Lee, Michael Matheson, Josh Morrissey. Forwards: Sean Couturier, Matt Duchene, Claude Giroux, Alex Killorn, Travis Konecny, Ryan O’Reilly, Nathan MacKinnon, Mitchell Marner, Brayden Point, Mark Scheifele, Brayden Schenn, Wayne Simmonds, Jeff Skinner.
Goaltenders: Leonardo Genoni, Niklas Schlegel. Defence: Raphael Díaz (C), Joël Genazzi, Dean Kukan, Romain Loeffel, Christian Marti, Dominik Schlumpf, Dave Sutter, Ramon Untersander. Forwards: Cody Almond, Andres Ambühl, Simon Bodenmann, Damien Brunner, Fabrice Herzog, Denis Malgin, Tanner Richard, Kevin Romy, Thomas Rüfenacht, Reto Schäppi, Reto Suri, Pius Suter.