World Juniors results
This year’s world juniors tournament was served up to the world like a hunk of Alberta beef.
The annual hockey tournament was jointly hosted by Edmonton and Calgary. The two cities played host to 10 countries looking to take home the gold at the International Ice Hockey Federation’s premier junior competition.
Energetic crowds packed both Rexall Place and the Scotiabank Saddledome in record numbers.
As per usual, the Canadian squad came into the tournament stacked with young talent, but several other countries were also prepped and ready to take it to the red and white. The Canadians disappointingly finished with the bronze medal, after losing to Russia in the semi-finals. The canucks beat Finland to claim third place at the ‘Dome.
But, oh — what a holiday feast of a tournament it was for hockey fans to feed on.
The most disliked player during the 10-day tournament was also the best. Nine points in one game, are you kidding?
Friberg was a highlight reel throughout the tournament. The hot-doggin’ Swede was clutch for his team.
One half of the Granlund brothers, he had 11 points without taking a penalty. His play got stronger each game.
Klefbom was a force defensively, finishing with two points and the highest plus- amongst all defencemen.
The Phoenix Coyotes’ top prospect led all defencemen with three goals and six points in six games.
There were arguably better goalies, but none more spectacular than the fist pumpin’ net-minder from Ostrava.
After a 31-year drought, Sweden finally brought home a gold medal at the world juniors.
The game, which went to overtime, was a tough, defensive 1-0 win for Sweden. The Swedes finally got a goal past Russian goaltender Andrei Makarov after outshooting the Russians 58 – 17. Sweden showed resiliency throughout the tournament , including two shoot-out wins and a three-goal comeback against Russia in the preliminary round. They were determined to get the job done.
Swedish goaltender Johan Gustafsson had a dismal .867 save percentage going into the final game, but was able to silence critics by turning away all 17 Russian shots for the shutout.
Sweden looks to defend its championship on home turf next year as Finland and Sweden are co-hosting the 2013 World Junior Hockey Championships.