The Russian men’s national team swept all three games to win the Channel One Cup this past weekend, grabbing the most points after two stages.
Led by former NHL scoring superstar Ilya Kovalchuk, the Russians came into their home tournament with a lot of hope. The Channel One Cup, the second leg of the 2014-2015 Euro Hockey Tour, was held in Sochi, Russia, and unlike the 2014 Winter Olympics, the Russians made sure to make hometown fans proud, winning all three games against Finland, Sweden and the Czech Republic.
In order to complete the sweep, they needed to defeat the Czech Republic in the final game, and a positive 3-2 result was what came out of it. The Czech’s got two late goals from Jan Kovar and Erik Hrna to give the Russians a run for their money, but three goals from Alexander Kutuzov, Yegor Yakovlev and Igor Grigorenko in the first half of the game sealed the deal.
Russia now has 30 gold medals at the Channel One Cup, as well as seven overall gold medals and 15 medals all time for Euro Hockey Tour play. Sweden, who won the Karjala Cup in early November, sits in second place overall, just two points behind Russia with 11 points, while Finland is behind in third after losing out of a silver medal by one point. The Czech’s have struggled big time, grabbing just two points in the six game span with zero wins to their credit.
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