In the final of the 2016 Ice Hockey World Championships in Moscow, Russia, two of the favourites fought for the tournament victory: Canada and Finland. After 60 minutes of play, Team Canada was defending champions.
Canada 2-0 Finland
The final was a pretty one-sided event even if it didn’t contain much scoring. Connor McDavid gave Canada the early lead and Finland played a tight point defensive game. That is a style of play we’ve seen Finland use the last years. However, it did not work against Canada this time. The Canadian players played an excellent dump and chase hockey, putting a tremendous pressure on Finnish defencemen. Finland did not have the energy to counterattack except for a few one man shows. In the end of the third period, they pulled the goalie in a last attempt to get the equalized just to see Matt Duchene put the puck in the open net with 0.9 seconds left to play. A funny detail was that the referees insisted on playing the last tenths of a second, despite Canada celebrating their gold. After the game, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin held a speech, congratulating the winners and stating that the Russian people had hoped for more than the bronze medal (Russia defeated team USA in the bronze medal game). Gulag next for Ovechkin and his friends?
Team Canada’s road to the gold
Canada came to Russia as defending champions. They won all their games except for against Finland in group B. This placed them second in the group which meant a quarterfinal against Sweden who placed third in group A. The game against Sweden, that had one of the weakest squads in many years, was an easy 6-0 win. The semifinal against North American rivals USA was a bit tougher, Canada winning 4-3. It is good for the Ice Hockey World Championships that Canada is putting a good squad on the ice instead of just sending college players that they did a few years ago. Now, we only wish that Swedish players will stop turning down playing in the national team so we can once again compete for the gold. After this victory, Corey Perry is the latest player in the triple gold club of hockey, which consists of players that have won Stanley Cup, The World Championship and the Olympics.