Canada defends Spengler Cup title with 3-0 victory over Switzerland

DAVOS, Switzerland — Canada extended its dominant run at the Spengler Cup on Sunday in shutout fashion.

Kevin Poulin made 36 saves as Canada blanked Switzerland 3-0 to win the tournament for the third straight time. Zach Boychuk and Maxim Noreau scored in the second period and David McIntyre added an insurance goal in the third.

It was the first time a team has won three straight titles at the event since Canada won four in a row from 1995-98.

“We had a special group,” Poulin said. “We played well, we played hard and we played the Team Canada way all along.

“I think we deserved to win tonight and we all played well.”

Canada caught a break on the game’s opening goal at Vaillant Arena. Noreau’s shot hit Boychuk’s leg and eluded Swiss goalie Leonardo Genoni midway through the second period.

Less than four minutes later, Canada won a clean faceoff and Noreau blasted a shot from the point to make it 2-0. McIntyre put the game away when he spun in the slot and squeezed a shot under Genoni’s arm.

Poulin held off the Swiss pressure in the final period. His best stop was a highlight-reel pad save on Damien Brunner with about two minutes left.

Canada won all four games and outscored the opposition 17-6. The title is the 15th for Canada overall, tying host HC Davos for the most in tournament history.

“It’s exciting, it’s an old tournament and it’s a hard tournament to win,” said Canada coach Willie Desjardins.

The six-team competition was the last of five Olympic tuneup events for the Canadians.

Canada will start to finalize its roster for the Games in the coming days. An Olympic team announcement is expected around Jan. 11.

“This group just made it tougher (to make selections),” Desjardins said. “We had lots of guys today that played great. The Swiss have a really good team. So lots of guys gave themselves a better chance because of today.”

The Pyeongchang Games are set for Feb. 9-25.

The Canadian Press

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