After an early wake-up call, the group of 22 Canadian teenagers seemed to turn it on and dominated Germany 7-2 in the opening game of the 2014 World Junior Hockey Championships. Germany scored first just 1:35 into the game to take the early lead before Team Canada scored twice to take their first lead of the game. The Germans tied the game just before the 16 minute mark, but from that point on it was all Canada.
They scored twice in the last 2 and a half minutes of the first period to take a 4-2 lead, and the Germans didn’t have much fight left for the rest of the game as the Canadians scored twice in the second and once in the third for good measure.
Anthony Mantha lit the lamp 3 times in earning player of the game status, twice to give Canada leads in the first period and then getting the hat trick on a second period power play to lead the Canadians. It was a solid, although imperfect start for their first game of the high-pressure tournament. They will look to get better each time out and peak for the medal round that begins on Jan 2nd.
Jake Paterson got the start in goal for Canada as expected, allowing 2 goals on 24 shots, and settled down after he and the team got off to a shaky start. Marvin Cupper did what he could to keep the Germans in the game, despite Canada only having 30 shots on goal, they dominated in offensive zone time possession and quality scoring chances.
Other notable Canadian performers included Jonathan Drouin with 3 assists, Sam Reinhart (1G, 1A) and 16 year old phenom Connor McDavid (2 assists). Ottawa Senators prospect Curtis Lazar chipped in an assist.
Canada’s next game is against the Czech Republic, on Saturday morning, 11:30 am Eastern Time.