David Perron will make his Pittsburgh Penguins debut against the Montreal Canadiens Saturday.
The Penguins acquired the forward from the Edmonton Oilers on Friday for Rob Klinkhammer and a first-round pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.
Bryan Mcwilliam is a a freelance sports journalist and editor who currently writes and edits for The Hockey News. He interned at THN in the summer of 2012 and was a big fan of the Calgary Flames run to the Stanley Cup in 1989. The Toronto, Ont., native enjoys contact sports, eating everything in sight and his favorite film is Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
The World Junior Championship is packed full of talented players from all over the globe, some of whom have already been drafted by an NHL franchise. Today, let’s take a look at how the top pick from the 2014 NHL Entry Draft from each country participating in the 2015 world junior is performing. The list below is in alphabetical order.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have had a strange season riddled with the mumps, causing several players to miss action, yet they still remain atop the Metropolitan Division and tied for the Eastern Conference lead.
Their strange season had all kinds of weird on Friday.
In front of a raucous Toronto crowd, Canada dominated Denmark, the Cinderella-story of the World Junior Championship, 8-0 on Friday.
Canada got off to a hot start thanks to goals from captain Curtis Lazar – who has scored in four straight games – and Sam Reinhart, but also experienced a concerning moment when Robby Fabbri went down to a lower-body injury in the first period.
Fabbri has been one of Canada’s top point-getters in the tournament, so the loss could be a substantial one.
The Canadians added to their lead in the second period thanks to a goals from draft-eligible Lawson Crouse, who has been impressive at the tournament on Canada’s fourth line, and Connor McDavid, next season’s potential No.1 draft pick. Lazar also added his second of the game with 6:39 left in the period to make it 5-0 after an exceptional pass from defenseman Joe Hicketts. The pass was so sweet that Lazar even blew Hicketts a thank you kiss.
Nick Paul added a nifty backhand goal in the third period to continue to build the Canadian lead, and Brayden Point added his first of the tournament making it 7-0 for Canada, which forced the Danes to pull goaltender Georg Sorensen in favour of Thomas Lillie. Nick Ritchie added a late power play goal to cement the victory.
The Danes never gave up, but the Canadians were too much and walked away with an easy win. Canada moves onto the semi-finals to play Slovakia.
In other World Junior action Friday, the U.S fell to Russia, while Sweden defeated Finland 6-3. The Swedes and Finns were neck and neck through the majority of the game, until the Swedes notched a late goal courtesy of Oskar Lindblom to seal the deal and move them forward in the tournament.
Russia and Sweden will face each other in the semi-finals.
Also in quarterfinal action, a very good defensive performance from Slovakia earned them a victory over the Czech Republic 3-0, in what some would say was a stunning victory. Denis Godla was a monster in net yet again for the Slovaks, continuing his impressive performance at the tournament.
In the day’s first game Switzerland defeated Germany 5-2. NHL Prospect Kevin Fiala added another goal for Switzerland, his fourth of the tournament.
Another busy Friday night in the NHL may be overshadowed by a number of games at the World Junior Championship, but one thing that shouldn’t be missed is Carey Price‘s appearance in net for the Montreal Canadiens.
Price will suit up for his 400th game as a Hab against Jaromir Jagr and the New Jersey Devils at 7 p.m. ET at the Prudential Center.
The St. Louis Blues locked horns with the Nashville Predators Tuesday, as both teams jockeyed for position near the top of the ultra-competitive Central Division.
Coming into the 2015 World Junior Championship, Denmark was certainly not viewed as a contender, nor were they expected to do much damage, but the Danes are making doubters eat their words.
After a strong effort in their first game of the tournament against Russia, where they forced a shootout, Denmark lost to the Czech Republic Monday in overtime. They badly needed and wanted at least a point Tuesday against a surprisingly tough Swiss squad, to move above the Czechs in Group B. They not only accomplished their goal of gaining a point, but they took the shootout win 4-3 thanks to the winner from Oliver Bjorkstrand.
The Edmonton Oilers are going through another horrific season, posting a record of 7-22-7. Their 21 points is good for last place in the NHL and nothing seems to be going their way, so GM Craig Mactavish made some low-rent moves Monday, hoping to give the team a spark.
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