In what is always considered to be one of the most anticipated games of the Spengler Cup, Canada was able to take a 2-0 victory over host Davos to earn a berth in the semi-finals later in the week.
With a focus on the NLA league championship, as well as their current semi-final effort in the Champions Hockey League, Davos did not look like a team on a mission against Yekaterinburg a day ago. Playing against Canada, however, always seems to bring the best out of the home country and that was apparent in the early stages of the first. They weren’t able to outshoot Canada in the first, taking nine shots compared to Canada’s 12, but they still did a good job of making Canada work hard in the opening period of play.
At the other end, however, Jeff Glass was out there having himself a great game. The starting goaltender for a stacked Team Canada roster at the 2005 World Juniors, Glass’ NHL career quickly failed before he even had a chance to play for his draft team, the Ottawa Senators. Now the starting goaltender with Dinamo Minsk in the KHL, Glass has spent the last seven years playing in the Russian league after a promising junior hockey career in the WHL.
Finally, after a lot of effort by the Canadians, the team was finally able to find a way to beat Leonardo Genoni. A star at the 2013 Spengler Cup, Matthew Lombardi made a pass over to former AHL all-star Alex Giroux, who waited long enough before finding a perfect angle and roofing it top corner on the Davos goalie five minutes into the second.
With Canada’s World Junior team putting on a clinic against Denmark over in Helsinki, it was only fitting that a former U20 forward would score for Canada at the Spengler Cup. Seven years to the day after scoring Canada’s sixth goal in a 15-0 win over Kazakhstan at the 2009 World Juniors, Chris DiDomenico scored in Davos after taking a pass from Tom Pyatt behind the net, one-timing it between the legs of Genoni for the 2-0 lead. It was the dagger in the heart for Davos, who couldn’t find the back of the net to finish the preliminary round without a victory.
With the win, Canada’s perfect record will earn them a bye to the Spengler Cup semi-finals on Wednesday. For Davos, they’ll bide their luck in their quarter-final match against Helsinki Jokerit at 9:00 am EST tomorrow, a day after Jokerit won their first Spengler Cup match since 2003. Canada will play the winner of that game with hopes of moving on to the tournament finals on Thursday.
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