Dillon Dube returns from injury to power Canada past Switzerland 8-1

Canada 8 Switzerland 1

HAMILTON — Only Dillon Dube thought he was sluggish after missing two weeks with an injured shoulder. To everyone else, he was the best player on the ice.

Dube scored twice and added an assist to power Canada past Switzerland 8-1 on Friday in a final pre-tournament exhibition game before the world junior hockey championship.

It was Dube’s first game for Canada after missing all three games at selection camp and Wednesday’s 9-0 win over the Czech Republic. The Calgary Flames prospect had been out after injuring his shoulder while playing for the Western Hockey League’s Kelowna Rockets on Dec. 9.

“At the start I was a little heavy, getting my legs back under me and into game shape,” said Dube. “I’ve been skating a lot throughout this time off, doing a little bit extra, so the cardio is there but I’m getting into game shape.

“Overall I thought it was a good 60 minutes.”

Dube had 18 goals and 21 assists in 27 games for Kelowna this season before his injury. As one of seven players returning from Canada’s silver-medal roster last year, head coach Dominique Ducharme has been counting on the 19-year-old forward to be a leader on and off the ice.

Ducharme is also expecting Dube to produce offensively, putting him on a line with Ontario Hockey League points leader Jordan Kyrou and reigning WHL player of the year Sam Steel.

“He was himself,” said Ducharme of Dube’s performance. “Speed, skills. We can see that even though it was his first game with Kyrou and Steel you can see the chemistry building and I think it’s really positive. It can only keep going.”

Tyler Steenbergen also had a pair of goals for Canada, including the eventual winner. Kyrou, Jake Bean, Drake Batherson and Kale Clague also scored for Canada in front of 12,562 at FirstOntario Centre.

Carter Hart started in net for Canada, making three saves in a scoreless first period. Colton Point took over after the intermission, stopping 3-of-4 shots.

“We’re a defence-focused team this year and I think we’re proving that right now,” said Point. “Our D blocked probably more shots than I stopped today.”

Hart will likely be in net when Canada opens the world junior championship on Dec. 26 in Buffalo, N.Y.

Guillaume Maillard replied for Switzerland. Philip Wuthrich played in net for Switzerland for the first two periods, turning aside 36-of-42 shots. Matteo Ritz subbed in for the third period, making 16 saves on 18 shots.

Canadian defenceman Conor Timmins, who was hurt blocking a shot against the Czech Republic, did not dress on Friday but is expected back for the first game of the world championship. Fellow defenceman Dante Fabbro (lower-body contusion) hasn’t skated in a week and is still considered day to day.

Kyrou streaked in from the wing to redirect a pass from Josh Mahura into the net early in the first period to open scoring.

Steenbergen stayed on the lip of the crease and took a couple of whacks at a loose puck before putting one past Wuthrich to make it 2-0 near the midway point of the first.

Dube one-timed a pass from Steel into the net at the 2:39 mark of the second period, before Maillard took a pass from behind the goal-line and backhanded the puck over Point’s shoulder to cut Canada’s lead to 3-1.

“I just settled in a little bit there,” said Dube. “It’s nice playing with those guys, they’re giving me chances to feel comfortable out there. I think they clicked well and it made me look a lot better.”

Bean responded for Canada jut as a power play expired, wiring a wrist shot past a screened Wuthrich.

Batherson tipped in a long shot from Mahura into the Swiss net to increase the Canadian lead to 5-1.

Dube brought the crowd to its feet for a second time on the night with 1:53 to go in the second. Kyrou sent a cross-ice pass to a wide open Dube who fired it straight into the net.

Steenbergen’s second of the night came 7:36 into the third when he swatted the puck past Ritz to make it 7-1. Clague added another goal for Canada moments later, carrying the puck up from his own end and snapping a wrist shot past Ritz.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta children whose only symptom of COVID-19 is a runny nose or a sore throat will no longer require mandatory isolation, starting Monday.
477 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in Alberta on Thursday

Changes being made to the COVID-19 symptom list for school-age children

Chasetin Morin
Photo from RCMP
Three men accused of assaulting Blackfalds RCMP officer going to trial

RCMP officer shot and wounded one of alleged attackers in December 2019

The Cenovus Energy Inc. logo seen at the company's headquarters in Calgary, Alta., Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
One-time costs of Husky takeover expected to be about $500 million, says Cenovus CEO

One-time costs of Husky takeover expected to be about $500 million, says Cenovus CEO

This drum circle was one of a multitude of activities held at The Hub on Ross in downtown Red Deer. The facility was permanently closed by the provincial government his week. (Advocate file photo.)
Many Red Deerians react with anger, dismay at closure of The Hub on Ross

Many disabled people can’t afford other recerational options, says guardian

Award-winning Calgary developer Brad Remington stands with Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer at the site of three multi-family condo complexes that are planned for Capstone, west of Carnival Cinemas. (Photo by LANA MICHELIn/Advocate staff).
$36M condo project on its way to Capstone development

Calgary developer plans to create 180 housing units to open in 2022

Alice Kolisnyk, deputy director of the Red Deer Food Bank, says the agency expects an increase in demand as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Every new subscription to the Red Deer Advocate includes a $50 donation to the food bank. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Support the food bank with a subscription to the Red Deer Advocate

The community’s most vulnerable members are always in need of a hand,… Continue reading

Workers at Olymel's Red Deer pork processing plant are among those eligible for a $2-an-hour bonus because of the pandemic.
Red Deer Advocate file photo
Two Olymel workers test positive for COVID-19 in Red Deer

Two workers at Olymel’s pork processing facility in Red Deer have tested… Continue reading

Ryan, Falcons avenge earlier loss to Panthers, 25-17

Ryan, Falcons avenge earlier loss to Panthers, 25-17

FILE - In this Oct. 28, 2015, file photo, former world boxing champion Roy Jones Jr. shows off his Russian passport during a news conference in Moscow, Russia. Mike Tyson and Jones got permission from California's athletic commission to return to the boxing ring next month because their fight would be strictly an exhibition of their once-unparalleled skills. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, File)
Mike Tyson, Roy Jones promise a fight in “exhibition” return

Mike Tyson, Roy Jones promise a fight in “exhibition” return

David Hearn watches his putt on the seventh hole during the first round of the Wyndham Championship golf tournament at Sedgefield Country Club on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020, in Greensboro, N.C. David Hearn, like everyone, has been deeply effected by the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Chris Carlson
Canada’s Hearn looks to shake off poor 2020 results with more consistent play

Canada’s Hearn looks to shake off poor 2020 results with more consistent play

Malnati birdies half of holes to take 1-shot lead in Bermuda

Malnati birdies half of holes to take 1-shot lead in Bermuda

Penny Oleksiak swims the 200 metre race during the 2018 Team Canada finals in Edmonton on Wednesday July 18, 2018. The number of young swimmers in Canada is dwindling because of barriers posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Swimming Canada urges pools to accommodate youth, says can be done safely

Swimming Canada urges pools to accommodate youth, says can be done safely

Canada's Meaghan Mikkelson (12) and Marie-Philip Poulin (29) defends against United States' Hilary Knight (21) during the third period of a rivalry series women's hockey game in Hartford, Conn., Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. Gina Kingsbury, Hockey Canada's director of women's national teams, hopes a Rivalry Series against the United States can happen this winter.THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michael Dwyer
Canadian women’s hockey team yearns for international competition

Canadian women’s hockey team yearns for international competition

Most Read