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Granlund scores goal for the ages at Worlds

Friday, 05.13.2011 / 4:51 PM / News

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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Granlund scores goal for the ages at Worlds
Mikael Granlund didn't have the most memorable of seasons, but he's got a chance to end it on a golden high.

Granlund, the ninth pick of the 2010 Entry Draft by the Minnesota Wild, had 36 points in 39 regular-season games with HIFK in the Finnish Elite League, but missed 21 games due to a concussion.

He returned to score a league-best 16 points in 15 playoff games to lead HIFK to the league title, and followed that with a star turn for Finland at the World Championship.

In Friday's semifinal against Russia, the game was scoreless early in the second period when the teams set for a faceoff to the left of the Russia net. Off the draw the puck rolled into the corner, where Russia's Dmitri Kalinin retrieved it. However, Granlund swept in, took the puck away from him and skated behind the Russia net.

And that's when the 19-year-old made a magic move fans will be watching for a long, long time.

Granlund, at full speed, scooped the puck onto the blade of his stick. With the puck suction-cupped on, he brought his stick up and used the crossbar to scrape the puck off. It dropped behind a stunned Russian goalie Konstantin Barulin and gave Finland a 1-0 lead.

The goal held up as the winner as Finland won 3-0 and advanced to Sunday's gold-medal game, where they'll face Sweden.

It was Granlund's second goal of the tournament, and his 6 assists lead the team.

Granlund, a 5-foot-10, 180-pounder, likely will be in camp for the Wild in the fall and could have a shot at earning a second-line center spot.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK



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We've got a team filled with captains, that's what I think. With these first two games we got in, we're really dominating and moving the puck really fast, and it's worked out really good.

— U.S. goalie Brandon Halverson after a 6-0 win against Germany in the World Junior Championship on Sunday