May 13, 2012, 4:44 PM EDT
In its most impressive performance to date, Team USA hammered host Finland 5-0 at the 2012 World Hockey Championships on Sunday.
Max Pacioretty (Montreal), Kyle Palmieri (Anaheim), Justin Faulk (Carolina), Bobby Ryan (Anaheim) and Chris Butler (Calgary) were the American goalscorers, lighting up Dallas Stars/Finland goalie Kari Lehtonen in front of a decidedly pro-Finnish crowd in Helsinki.
As you might expect from a drubbing on home soil, the Finns were a testy lot as the game progressed. Emotions boiled over in the third period when ex-NHLer Anssi Salmela — currently playing in Russia — drove American defenseman Alex Goligoski headfirst into the boards.
Salmela was tossed and will likely face supplemental discipline. After being checked over by team doctors, Goligoski returned to the game.
Team USA head coach Scott Gordon said the incident was unfortunate, but shouldn’t take away from one of the best American performances at the WHC in some time
“I don’t think you will see that kind of play if we play them again,” Gordon said. “It was a little bit of frustration. They are obviously a pretty good team and they ran into a team that was very focused.”
“It was probably one of the most complete games we’ve had over here in the last four years. It was every guy. It wasn’t one or two lines, it was top to bottom.”
Here are the ramifications of the 5-0 win, as per USA Today’s Kevin Allen:
The win clinched a quarterfinals berth for the Americans (5-1) and they could face Finland in that game if the standings remain the same. With one preliminary round game against Switzerland remaining, the Americans are second in their group with 13 points. Canada is in first place with 16 points. Finland has 12 points and Slovakia is in fourth with nine points.
– Detroit Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard made 18 saves to earn the shutout.
– Faulk, the 20-year-old ‘Canes defenseman, now has four goals in the tournament, tops among all blueliners.
- Pressing Question: Can the Blackhawks avoid the Stanley Cup hangover? 3
- Florida wins ’14 NHL draft lottery, will pick first overall 35
- Philly mum on Mason’s availability for Game 1 vs. Rangers 25
- Pressing question: Can the Blues get back on track? 16
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension 90
- Sabres, Panthers have best odds for 2014 NHL draft lottery 16
- Leafs ‘lack an identity,’ says Leiweke 30
- On the hot seat: McPhee will ‘talk in a couple of days’ 21
- Bruins are 7/2 favorites to win the Stanley Cup; Blues next at 6/1 49
- End of an era: Trotz out as Nashville head coach 40
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension (90)
- Lightning’s Malone arrested for DUI, cocaine possession (73)
- Update: Daniel Sedin in stable condition, hospitalized after scary hit (58)
- Halak’s agent ‘bewildered’ by Oates’ remarks prior to Blues game (51)
- Here’s the schedule for the first round of the 2014 playoffs (51)