IIHF World Championships Quarterfinals Blackhawks Recap: Germany, Canada, Finland, and The United States Advance

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IIHF World Championships Quarterfinals Blackhawks Recap: Germany, Canada, Finland, and The United States Advance

Chicago Blackhawks

And then there were five. The Chicago Blackhawks entered the IIHF World Championships with eight players and prospects in the tournament on Day One (the late addition of 2020 draft pick Drew Commesso to Team USA’s roster eventually made that nine). At the conclusion of the Group Stage, all nine of those players made it to the Quarterfinals with their respective countries. Following the conclusion of the Quarterfinal round, five Blackhawks players and prospects are left playing in the Semifinal and have an opportunity to come home with a World Championships medal.

In the early action, Switzerland took on Germany matching young Blackhawks Philipp Kurahsev against Lukas Reichel. Switzerland took the early lead late in the first period, with Kurashev registering a secondary assist on the play.

The Swiss side would extend their lead to 2-0, but Germany scored two goals late in the second and third periods to tie the game and force overtime. In the 10-minute three-on-three extra frame, 2020 first-round pick Reichel nearly sent the Germans to the Semifinal in dramatic fashion.

The teams would head to the shootout, where Reichel had an opportunity again to send Germany through, but was stopped. In the end, it would be Marcel Noebels scoring in the shootout to complete the comeback for Germany and send them to the Semifinals. Kurashev ends the tournament with one goal and five points in eight games played.

The other early morning game saw the United States take care of Slovakia with a 6-1 drubbing. Blackhawks goaltending prospect Drew Commesso is part of the U.S. roster but is just along for the ride as the third goaltender on the team’s depth chart. Colin Blackwell and Conor Garland led the United States with two goals each in the 6-1 win.

In afternoon action, Russia took on Canada in a matchup that pitted five Blackhawks players and prospects against each other. Although after taking an awkward hit in the previous game for Russia, Max Shalunov was unavailable for the Russians this afternoon, so it was Nikita Zadorov taking on Brandon Hagel, Nicolas Beaudin, and Brandon Pirri.

None of them would register points in the game, which went to overtime tied at 1-1 after Canadian Captain Adam Henrique scored the tying goal in the third period. In the overtime period, Troy Stetcher toe-dragged two defenders on his way to setting up Andrew Mangiapane for the overtime winner.

After losing their first three games in regulation, Canada has woken up in the tournament to advance to the Semifinal. With the loss, Zadorov and Shalunov’s tournaments are over. Zadorov finishes with three assists in eight games played, while Shalunov registered just one goal in six games played.

Finally in less dramatic fashion, the final game of the afternoon saw Finland hold the fort against the Czech Republic in a 1-0 win. The lone goal for the Finns coming from Jere Innala and Jussi Olkinuora stopping all 28 shots he faced in a shutout win. The loss ends the tournament for Blackhawks forward Dominik Kubalík. He finishes with three goals and six points in seven games for the Czechs.

Saturday kicks off the Semifinals with the North American border battle between Canada and the United States. The U.S. defeated the Canadians earlier in the tournament in the group stage, 5-1 the final. That game is set for an 6:15 a.m. CT puck drop, so bring your coffees. The other Semifinal will see Finland take on Germany at 10:15 a.m. CT. Finland beat Germany earlier in the tournament in the group stage, 2-1 the final.



Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.