2021 mwc can usa

IIHF Worlds Preview: Canada vs. United States

Saturday, June 5 | 7 a.m. ET | Riga, Latvia | Semifinal

Jason La Rose
June 5, 2021

GAME NOTES: Canada vs. United States (June 5)

TV: TSN | Stream: TSN Direct

It’s hard to say that a team that has won gold 26 times at the IIHF World Championship can go on a Cinderella run at the tournament, and yet, here we are. Left for dead a week ago after three consecutive losses, Canada’s National Men’s Team will face the U.S. in a Saturday semifinal in Riga.


Canada sprung an upset in its quarterfinal, downing ROC 2-1 in overtime. Facing rested Florida Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky, the Canadians could manage only a third-period power play goal from Adam Henrique against Bobrovsky. But the Russians only got one past Darcy Kuemper in regulation.

That set up three-on-three overtime and paved the way for a must-see moment from Troy Stecher, who eluded one Russian defender with a between-the-legs backhand toe drag and dangled around another before sliding a perfect pass to Andrew Mangiapane, who sent Canada to the semis.

The Americans were never challenged in their quarterfinal, opening up a three-goal lead in the first period en route to a comfortable 6-1 win over Slovakia. Conor Garland and Colin Blackwell each scored twice for the U.S., which is the highest-seeded team left in the tournament and rides a seven-game win streak into the semifinals.


You have to go all the way back … two weeks ago. The North American rivals clashed in the preliminary round in Riga on May 23, with the U.S. scoring the game’s first four goals in a 5-1 win. It was just the third regulation time win ever over Canada for the Americans, spanning 48 games over 90 years.

Trevor Moore led the way with a pair of goals for the U.S., while Maxime Comtois was the lone marksman for the Canadians, ending their tournament-opening scoring drought at more than 111 minutes.


Let’s be honest, we all just want to see what this Canadian team can do for an encore. The big line of Henrique, Mangiapane and Brown continues to produce at a red-hot rate (30 points in five games), Owen Power is looking more and more like a seasoned veteran instead of an 18-year-old on the blueline and Darcy Kuemper has stopped 92 of 99 shots in his last four starts. We asked this question before the quarterfinals, and we’ll ask it again – how many upsets have been sprung by nothing-to-lose teams over the years? Canada is playing with house money, so anything can happen.

No team left in the hunt for gold is hotter than the U.S. Even after losing captain Justin Abdelkader the Americans continue to roll, having gone without a loss since a 2-1 setback to Finland in their tournament opener. They have been lights out in their own end, conceding a worlds-low nine goals in eight games and allowing just a single power-play goal in 22 opportunities (a 95.5% success rate).


Even with the loss earlier in the tournament, Canada has convincingly owned the head-to-head history with 41 wins in 48 games. This marks just the third time the rivals have met in the semifinals or later at the IIHF World Championship; Ryan Ellis scored the winner early in the third period to give Canada a back-and-forth 4-3 victory in the semifinals in 2016, but the Americans had the upper hand in a 4-1 win in the bronze medal game in 2018.

All-time record: Canada leads 41-7 (U.S. leads 4-1 in OT/SO)
Canada goals: 236
United States goals: 97

For more information:

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 284-6484 

[email protected] 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 777-4567

[email protected]

Jeremy Knight
Manager, Corporate Communications
Hockey Canada

(647) 251-9738

[email protected]

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