Nugent-Hopkins has goal, assist as Canada beats Germany 3-0 at hockey worlds

HERNING, Denmark — Just hours removed from a tightly contested overtime win over Latvia, Canada took no chances in its final preliminary round game at the world hockey championship.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had a goal and an assist as Canada finished off its round-robin schedule with a workmanlike 3-0 win over Germany on Tuesday. Less than 18 hours after Connor McDavid’s overtime winner clinched a quarterfinal berth, Canada controlled Tuesday’s game from start to finish at Jyske Bank Boxen.

“It was a quick turnaround (between games),” said Tyson Jost, who picked up his fourth goal of the tournament in the third period. “You’re not used to that in the National Hockey League.

“I thought we handled it well. No excuses, that’s just hockey. We’re playing the game we love.”

Just 20 seconds into the first period, Brayden Schenn put the Canadians on the board when he directed a pass in the slot from Nugent-Hopkins past sliding German goaltender Niklas Treutle.

Nugent-Hopkins scored his fourth of the tournament at 8:14 of the second period with a shot that went between a screened Treutle’s pads.

McDavid, Canada’s leading scorer, picked up his 12th and 13th points of the tournament with assists on Canada’s first two goals.

In the third, Jost rounded out the scoring when he converted a pass into the slot from Joel Edmundson.

Starting in back-to-back games, Darcy Kuemper wasn’t busy but stayed calm when Germany was able to generate traffic near his crease in the second period. He stopped 12 shots for his first shutout of the tournament.

“I thought we did a good job of taking care of our bodies last night and getting ready to go again,” said Kuemper. “I thought as a team, we played super responsible. We were committed to playing defensively, even starting in the (offensive) zone, all the way back. That’s what we want to build on going into the medal round here, so I think we’re right where we want to be.”

With a quarterfinal berth already locked down, Tuesday’s game served as a tune-up for the playoff round as coach Bill Peters continued to experiment with line combinations and work on special teams.

For a fourth-straight game, the power play sputtered. Canada has now failed to score on its last 16 man-advantage opportunities.

“We’ll get it addressed,” said Peters. “We’ll change it again.

“We’ll work on it tomorrow when we get into Copenhagen. We’ve got some ice time and it’ll be an area that we definitely have to address. It’ll need to be fixed if we’re going to have the success that we want.”

Kyle Turris, eager to get into action even though his equipment didn’t arrive by game time, made his 2018 Canada debut in borrowed gear and was inserted onto the second power-play unit.

“The skates are (Mat) Barzal’s and the stick is (Aaron) Ekblad’s,” Turris said. “He had an extra one that I could cut down and kind of make my own. Different curve still, though, and flex.

“Just keeping it light and trying not to think about it.”

“It’s a long way to come,” added Peters. “He didn’t want to watch hockey, he wanted to play hockey, so he gutted it out.”

Pierre-Luc Dubois returned to the lineup after missing Monday’s game with a lower-body injury, while Josh Bailey was scratched with a lower-body injury of his own. On defence, Ryan Pulock drew back into the lineup, while Thomas Chabot did not dress.

The Germans knocked Canada out of gold-medal contention in the semifinal of the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang in February, but only 10 players from that roster returned to suit up at the world championship.

Despite the addition of NHL players Leon Draisaitl (Edmonton Oilers) and Dennis Seidenberg (New York Islanders), the Germans were unable to build off their Olympic success in Denmark. Marco Sturm’s group will not advance to the quarterfinal after finishing sixth in Group B with just one regulation win and one overtime win in seven games.

Tuesday’s win guarantees Canada a third-place finish in Group B. The Canadians will now travel to Copenhagen and cross over to play the second-place team from Group A in Thursday’s quarterfinal, either Sweden or Russia. A quarterfinal win will give Canada the opportunity to play for a medal for the fourth straight year after winning gold in 2015 and 2016 and silver in 2017.

In early action on Tuesday, Finland clinched first place in Group B with a 6-2 win over the United States and Switzerland locked down fourth place in Group A with a 5-1 win over France. Slovakia beat Belarus 7-4 in a match between teams already eliminated from medal-round contention.

Thursday’s quarterfinals in Herning will see Finland meet Switzerland while the United States plays the Czech Republic.

Carol Schram, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

RDC cancels championship-winning golf program due to tight finances

Short season, small number of student golfers were also considerations

Fire investigators comb through industrial fire wreckage looking for answers

Industrial building in north Red Deer was completely gutted in Wednesday morning fire

Time for a central Albertan in cabinet, says chamber of commerce

Central Alberta had no cabinet ministers in last government

Trump Russia probe finally delivers some answers

WASHINGTON — After nearly two years of waiting, America is getting some… Continue reading

WATCH video of Innisfail resident creating the world’s biggest caricature

Watch as Innisfail resident Dean Foster creates the world’s biggest caricature of… Continue reading

Notre Dame rector: “Computer glitch” possible fire culprit

PARIS — A “computer glitch” may have been behind the fast-spreading fire… Continue reading

Lower price discounts to boost Q1 oil profits but uncertainty hangs over sector

CALGARY — Lower discounts on western Canadian oil prices have swollen producer… Continue reading

Local Sports: Hard training pays off for Red Deer runner Jared Howse

Jared Howse understands success doesn’t come easily. The 17-year-old has put together… Continue reading

CRA’s automatic benefit registrations give retirees reason to file on time

TORONTO — This is the time of year when procrastinators begin to… Continue reading

Study: Genetic test predicts middle-aged obesity risk

NEW YORK — Can a genetic test identify newborns at risk of… Continue reading

Downtown Red Deer Co-op Plaza Food store closing

Central Alberta Co-op is closing its downtown Red Deer Plaza food store… Continue reading

Earth, meet Polo: Ralph Lauren unveils plastic bottle shirt

NEW YORK — Earth, meet Polo. Polo Ralph Lauren on Thursday launched… Continue reading

Statistics Canada reports retail sales rose 0.8 per cent in February

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says retail sales rose 0.8 per cent in… Continue reading

Most Read