Team Canada defeats Switzerland in men’s Olympic hockey opener – National


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Rene Bourque and Wojtek Wolski scored twice and Derek Roy had three assists as Crew Canada opened its Olympic marketing campaign by dispatching Switzerland 5-1 on Thursday.

For a workforce anticipated to attain by committee, the Canadian males discovered their offence early on the Pyeongchang Winter Video games. They led 2-Zero after 7.5 minutes and made the Swiss pay after they went to the penalty field.

Maxim Noreau had a purpose and an help for a hard-working, hard-skating Canada. Chris Lee had two assists.

WATCH: It’s been 24 years for the reason that NHL hasn’t participated within the Winter Olympics, till now. Identical to the 1994 workforce, Canada’s 2018 25-man roster lacks family names, however former NHLer and ’94 silver medallist, Todd Hlushko says there’s energy within the underdog mentality. Megan Robinson reviews.

“I assumed it was a superb recreation for us,” stated Canada head coach Willie Desjardins. “I feel the Swiss have an excellent workforce, we had a variety of respect for them.

“I feel we have been lucky to get a few objectives early. The ability play was good. However I feel they performed exhausting all through. For us although, it was a superb begin.”

Simon Moser pulled one again for Switzerland on the facility play at 7:33 of the third, tapping in a puck that trickled via Canadian goalie Ben Scrivens’ legs after a goalmouth scramble.

It marked the primary time for the reason that 1994 Video games that Canada fielded a workforce that wasn’t made up of NHLers. And it’s the primary time since 1956 that no participant on Crew Canada had any Olympic expertise.

WATCH: Canadians attending the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang aren’t involved NHL gamers gained’t be competing within the Video games, saying they’re excited to cheer on whoever places on the maple leaf.

Canada’s 25-man roster does boast 5,544 NHL video games performed, led by captain Chris Kelly’s 833 outings with the Boston Bruins and Ottawa Senators. Lee and fellow defenceman Mat Robinson are the one gamers with out NHL expertise.

The Swiss workforce is made up totally of Swiss league expertise. Canada’s squad is European-based except for the gamers from the North American minors.

Swiss coach Patrick Fischer reckons he’s with out some 12-13 NHL gamers right here. “However Canada is lacking 200,” Fischer stated with a wry smile.

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The Canadians chased Swiss goalie Leonardo Genoni lower than six minutes into the second interval after he gave up his fourth purpose on 12 pictures. Scrivens, who plies his commerce within the KHL as of late, was stable within the Canada purpose. The Swiss outshot Canada 29-28.

“The workforce performed effectively,” Scrivens stated.

“We’ve been right here for per week now. I feel everybody was excited to get going. I assumed we executed, caught collectively.”

Canadian flags have been seen throughout the 6,000-seat Kwandong Hockey Centre however so have been empty seats.

Canada’s subsequent recreation is Saturday towards the Czech Republic, which performed South Korea within the different evening recreation on the Gangneung Hockey Centre.

Chris Kelly will captain Canada’s men’s hockey team at 2018 Winter Olympics

Bourque, who potted 163 objectives for six NHL groups, scored on Canada’s first shot when he cruised out from the nook to deftly tip in a Lee slap-pass from the blueline at 2:57.

Noreau made it 2-Zero on the facility play at 7:30, together with his shot from the blueline beating Genoni with Bourque screening. Defenceman Rob Klinkhammer, a bodily presence on the different finish, rang one off the submit late within the interval.

The Canadian energy play struck once more 5 minutes into the second interval with Bourque stuffing the puck in from in entrance. Wolski scored on a superb solo rush 52 seconds later, slicing via two Swiss gamers earlier than beating Genoni excessive on the glove facet.

That was it for the Swiss starter, who was pulled in favour of former NHLer Jonas Hiller.

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Wolski capped the scoring with an empty-net purpose.

Switzerland pushed again on the finish of the second interval, retaining the puck within the Canadian zone however couldn’t convert the strain.

Canada gained 23 of 30 faceoffs within the first 40 minutes.

The Canadians needed to survive 33 seconds of five-on-three within the third. However Moser scored with the one-man benefit.

Two-time defending champion Canada has gained three of the 5 Olympic males’s tournaments (2002, 2006, 2010) since NHL gamers began competing within the Video games in 1998.

The NHL accounted for 49 per cent of the gamers on the 2014 Video games in Sochi, in comparison with Nagano 1998 (36 per cent), Salt Lake Metropolis 2002 (45 per cent), Turin 2006 (54 per cent) and Vancouver 2010 (51 per cent).

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