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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Canada hammers Germans, RNH with 5 Points

Good Morning PuckAddicts!!!

In one of the most anticipated games in World Junior Hockey Championship history (thanks NHL Lockout), Team Canada exploded for nine tallies versus a sub-par German team in their opening game in this year's tournament.

Edmonton Oilers sophomore Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored a goal and four assists, while his line mates Jonathan Huberdeau and Mark Scheifele combined for 10 points. Malcolm Subban went mostly untested in this affair, however he did give up a bit of a softy on a horrible turnover by Mark McNeil in the second period. He bounced back beautifully in the third, making a couple of point blank saves.

Canada continued their undisciplined play in the first two periods with a parade of unnecessary penalties, putting behind the eight ball early, and allowing the Germans to stay hopeful. However, Canada dominated to majority of the game, often maintaining possession of the puck in the German zone for three to four minutes at a time.

Canadian head coach Steve Spott, while happy with the result, should be apprehensive about his team's defensive zone play. Scott Harrington and Dougie Hamilton were solid on the Canadian defense, but Team Canada was often hemmed in by a tenacious German team, who were more lucky than good on all three of their goals. The fourth line for Team Canada showed an obvious deficiency in transitional play, giving up the puck multiple times along the half-wall, leading the German scoring chances.

Another obvious weakness in Canada's game was their lack of a defensive presence in the mid-ice lane. They allowed the Germans to attack with speed through the neutral zone on numerous occasions, forcing some over extended shift and mistakes in their own zone.

Team Canada's next test comes Friday morning against Team Slovakia.

Special Correspondant in Ufa

HabsAddict is happy to welcome Robert Myerson to our staff. Rob will be covering the World Junior Championship from Ufa, Russia after the Slovakia game, and providing our readers same day game summaries and analysis. Join me in welcoming Robert aboard.

(Photo courtesy Canadian Press)

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