They may be young, but Team North America served notice they could be a force to be reckoned with in the upcoming World Cup of Hockey by spanking Team Europe 4-0 Thursday night in Quebec City in the exhibition opener for both teams.
Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad picked up an assist on Nathan MacKinnon’s game-opening goal 3:52 into the second period. Ekblad logged 22:12 of ice time and finished the game with 1 shot on goal, three hits 4 PIM and an even rating
Vincent Trocheck also skated for North America, finishing with a blocked shot and an even rating in 13:20 of ice time.
In addition to opening the scoring, Colorado’s MacKinnon also scored the game’s final goal. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Johnny Gaudreau scored the other North American markers with Gaudreau also adding a helper.
Pittsburgh’s Matt Murray stopped 23 shots to post the shutout.
Finland 3, Sweden 2 (OT)
Aleksander Barkov scored the opening goal and set up Olli Maatta’s overtime winner as Finland edged Sweden.
Fellow Florida forward Jussi Jokinen drew the secondary assist on the decisive goal.
Barkov finished the game with one shot, one hit, 2 PIM and an even rating in 18:06 TOI.
Jokinen logged 16:35 of ice time and registered a shot on goal and an even rating.
- Russia beat the Czech Republic 4-3 in the other World Cup exhibition tilt played on September 8. No Florida Panthers were involved in the making of this game.