The 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship opened today in Helsinki with the respective countries of all four Florida Panthers prospects taking part in the action.
USA 4, Canada 2
Uber prospect Auston Matthews scored the clinching goal as Team USA struck three times in the third period to best Canada in Group A action. Lawson Crouse had a quiet outing, registering no points or shots on goal. The big winger finished the game with a -1 rating while seeing duty on Canada's third line. With starting goaltender Mason McDonald struggling a bit in net, the chance of seeing Cats' draftee Samuel Montembeault on Monday versus Denmark increased.
Finland 6, Belarus 0
Jesse Puljujarvi scored two goals and added an assist to lead the host country to 6-0 rout of Belarus. Veini Vehviainen made 10 stops to post the shutout. Juho Lammikko finsihed the tilt with a +1 rating, but like Crouse had no points or shots. The Finns will tangle with Russia on Monday.
Sweden 8, Switzerland 3
Dmytro Timashov bagged two goals and added a helper to lead the Swedes to an easy 8-3 win over Switzerland. Denis Malgin picked up assists on the first two Swiss goals. The pint-sized forward registered two shots on goal and finished the game with an even rating. Switzerland will look to rebound tomorrow against Denmark.
Russia 2, Czech Republic 1 (SO)
Maxim Lazarev scored the winner in the shootout and goaltender Alexander Georgiev denied all three shots from the Czechs. The regulation time scorers were Michael Spacek for the Czechs and Artur Lauta who replied for Russia.