Canada continued to cruise in Paris at the World Championships, crushing Belarus 6-0 to win their third straight and retain the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
Unsurprisingly, with Canada being the favourite, they came out firing quickly, and needed just over five minutes to strike, with a Brayden Point one-timer beating Mikhail Karnaukhov top corner, for surprisingly the only goal of the first. While Karnaukhov played relatively strong considering, he and his defence could not contain the Canadian juggernaut for long, as a pair of Nathan MacKinnon goals put Canada ahead 3-0 by the end of the second. First it was a laser on a cross-ice Mitch Marner pass on the power play that beat Karnaukhov top corner, followed ten minutes later by a chippy effort, banging in a loose puck just over the red line with Belarusian defenders abound.
The wheels fully came off for the Bisons in the third, who managed a relatively small deficit (all things considered) despite being outshot 26-7 in the first 40 minutes. First it was Jeff Skinner sidestepping defender Oleg Yevenko to go top shelf on a nifty MacKinnon backhand pass from behind the net, followed by Claude Giroux burying a Skinner rebound into a wide open net for the 5-0 lead. Point would bookend the victory with his second being the game’s final goal, pulling a nifty move to slip defender Pavel Vorobei and ripping a rifle top corner, once again, to beat Karnaukhov. On the other end of the ice, it was Calvin Pickard notching the easy 13-save shutout, while Karnaukhov stopped 39 of 45 on the night.
With the win, Canada retains the International Hockey Lineal Championship, their 63rd title, which they won six days ago from Switzerland, retaining at the tournament against Czechia and Slovenia. This marks the fourth IHLC meeting between these nations since Belarus’ first IHLC tilt in 1998, with Canada improving to 4-0 all-time in their first meeting since last year’s 8-0 thumping in Saint Petersburg. Canada will next meet the hosts France in three days time, with Les Bleus looking to play spoilers and capture the IHLC.
05:08 – GOAL – Point (Marner, Konecny)
15:54 – PEN – Marner, tripping
21:53 – PEN – Kovyrshin, high sticking
24:06 – PEN – Volkov, hooking
24:20 – PP GOAL – MacKinnon (Marner, Barrie)
35:21 – GOAL – MacKinnon (Skinner, Giroux)
35:44 – PEN – Khenkel, holding
39:43 – PEN – Graborenko, delay of game
41:04 – PEN – Yevenko, high sticking
47:01 – GOAL – Skinner (MacKinnon, Matheson)
48:11 – PEN – Vorobei, delay of game
50:16 – GOAL – Giroux (Skinner, Morrissey)
52:28 – PEN – Konecny, boarding
54:42 – GOAL – Point (Konecny, Vlasic)
58:49 – PEN – Marner, tripping
W: Pickard (13-13)
L: Karnaukhov (39-45)
SHOTS ON GOAL
11+15+19 = 45
4+3+6 = 13
Goaltenders: Chad Johnson, Calvin Pickard. Defence: Tyson Barrie, Calvin de Haan, Jason Demers, Michael Matheson, Josh Morrissey, Marc-Édouard Vlasic. Forwards: Sean Couturier, Matt Duchene (A), Claude Giroux (C), Alex Killorn, Travis Konecny, Ryan O’Reilly (A), Nathan MacKinnon, Mitchell Marner, Brayden Point, Mark Scheifele, Brayden Schenn, Wayne Simmonds, Jeff Skinner.
Goaltenders: Mikhail Karnaukhov, Vitali Trus. Defence: Roman Graborenko, Kristian Khenkel, Dmitri Korobov (A), Yevgeni Lisovets, Ilya Shinkevich, Pavel Vorobei, Oleg Yevenko. Forwards: Artyom Demkov, Sergei Drozd, Danila Karaban, Alexander Kogalev, Sergei Kostitsyn, Yevgeni Kovyrshin, Alexander Kulakov, Charles Linglet, Alexander Pavlovich (A), Yegor Sharangovich, Andrei Stas (C), Mikhail Stefanovich, Artyom Volkov.