TAVARES LEADS CANADA TO PRE-WORLD CUP WIN
OTTAWA, Ont. – The rematch goes to Canada.
John Tavares (Mississauga, Ont./New York Islanders, NHL) scored twice, and Logan Couture (London, Ont./San Jose, NHL), Jay Bouwmeester (Edmonton, Alta./St. Louis, NHL) and Matt Duchene (Haliburton, Ont./Colorado, NHL) once each, as Canada beat the United States 5-2 in pre-World Cup of Hockey play on Saturday.
The win avenged a 4-2 loss 24 hours earlier in Columbus, Ohio.
The key for Round 2 for Canada was special teams. The power play failed to click in the opener, going 0/3 with the man-advantage.
It scored three times in the rematch.
After James van Riemsdyk failed to convert on a shorthanded drive to the net midway through the first period, Canada turned the puck back up ice. Joe Thornton (St. Thomas, Ont./San Jose, NHL) sent the puck down low to Couture, who scored on a backhand with his back to the net.
Just over two minutes later Canada had its second power play goal. Set up at the bottom of the face-off circle, Tavares saw his cross-ice pass banked off an American defender and in.
And just over two minutes after that Ryan Getzlaf (Regina, Sask./Anaheim, NHL) sent a pass out front to Bouwmeester, who finished from just inside the face-off circle.
The U.S. got one back before the period was over. Ryan McDonagh’s shot deflected off of Shea Weber’s (Sicamous, B.C./Montreal, NHL) stick and over Braden Holtby’s (Lloydminster, Sask./Washington, NHL) shoulder.
Late penalty trouble had Canada starting the second period on its heels, with 54 seconds of five-on-three to kill.
The U.S. wasted no time chipping away at the Canadian lead. John Carlson one-timed a pass from Patrick Kane only 38 seconds after the intermission.
The two-goal lead was restored midway through the period. Tyler Seguin (Brampton, Ont./Dallas, NHL) fought off a defender and found Duchene between the hash marks for a one-timer.
Eight minutes into the third Tavares was gifted a gaping net down low and gave Canada a three-goal lead.
Drew Doughty (London, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL), Corey Perry (Peterborough, Ont./Anaheim, NHL) and Steven Stamkos (Markham, Ont./Tampa Bay, NHL) each had two assists in the win.
Holtby and Corey Crawford (Montreal, Que./Chicago, NHL) split time in net, combining for 21 saves.
Cory Schneider and Ben Bishop made 29 saves in the American net.
Canada wraps up its exhibition schedule Wednesday (7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT) against Russia.