Canada got two goals by defenseman Dion Phaneuf and three assists each from Duncan Keith and Ryan Getzlaf in an 8-0 rout of Kazakhstan in Helsinki on Saturday that assured the Canadians of a quarterfinal berth at the World Championship.
Devan Dubnyk stopped 24 shots for the shutout and 15 players had at least one point as Canada (5-0-1-0, 16 points) fired 58 shots at two Kazakh goalies.
"As far as scoring chances go, it was easy," Dubnyk told the IIHF's website, "but I don't know if that makes it easier to get a shutout. Anytime you can keep them all out, it's good, regardless of who the opponent is."
Phaneuf's power-play goal was the only tally in the first period. He took a pass from Getzlaf, moved in from the point and blasted a slap shot over the glove of goalie Vitali Kolesnik.
Roman Savchenko had a glorious chance to tie the game early in the second period after Dubnyk kicked a rebound back into the slot and onto Savchenko’s stick. But the puck was bouncing, and Savchenko fired over the net.
Canada blew the game open early in the third period on goals by Evander Kane, John Tavares and Teddy Purcell in a span of 1:50, chasing Kolesnik from the net in the process. Vitali Yeremeyev came on in relief and allowed goals by Phaneuf and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
Canada has two days off before finishing its round-robin with a game against Belarus on Tuesday. The Kazakhs (0-0-1-5, 1 point), trying to avoid relegation, play host Finland on Monday.
France 4, Switzerland 2
France pulled the biggest upset of the tournament in Helsinki when it beat Switzerland for the first time in 12 years.
Teddy and Stephane da Costa scored a goal each for France, which got 41 saves from Cristobal Huet. Switzerland outshot France 43-27, but Huet -- who plays for Fribourg-Gotteron in the Swiss league -- was superb and France scored two power-play goals in a 44-second span of the third period after Goran Bezina received a five-minute major for checking to the head.
"They got a five-minute power play and scored two goals, and we couldn't react. They just sat back. Their goalie played unbelievably well. You have to give them credit. We didn't play well enough tonight," Swiss captain Mark Streit told the IIHF's website.
France's Yohann Auvitu opened the scoring at 17:11 of the opening period, beating goaltender Tobias Stephan through a screen. Teddy Da Costa made it 2-0 at 12:44 of the second period on a wrister than went in and out of the net so quickly the goal had to be confirmed by video review.
But just 30 seconds later, Damien Brunner, the Swiss league’s scoring champion, scored Switzerland’s first goal by firing a wrister that deflected off a French skate and went past Huet.
Brunner then tied it at 15:04, finishing off a give-and-go with Kevin Romy with a quick shot past Huet.
But after Bezina received a major and a game misconduct for checking to the head for running over Anthony Guttig, France took advantage of the long power play to go back in front. Laurent Meunier’s slap shot from the blue line caught Stephan off-guard at 6:21 to put France back in front. Stephane da Costa's one-timer in from the bottom of the left circle at 7:05 gave France (2-0-0-3, 6 points), a two-goal lead.
France got into late penalty trouble, giving Switzerland a long 5-on-3 power play with less than three minutes remaining, but killed both penalties and was able to celebrate its first win against Switzerland in any top-level international tournament since 2000.
"They had even a 6-on-3 in the end. Guys were blocking shots, and Huet was amazing. That's just a team working hard, doing things that may not be so pretty but that got us the win," France's Baptiste Amar, who played almost 26 minutes, told the IIHF's website.
Switzerland (2-0-0-3, 6 points) faces Slovakia on Sunday. France meets Belarus on Monday.
Germany 2, Denmark 1
Germany kept its hopes of advancing to the quarterfinals alive by edging winless Denmark in Stockholm on a third-period goal by Philip Gogulla.
"It was our game. With all the chances we had today, I had no doubt we were going to win it. But we got beaten by a goalie. That’s the way it works sometimes," said Denmark's Morten Green, who opened the scoring by beating goaltender Dennis Endras 1:35 into the second period after the Danes outshot Germany 13-5 in the first.
Germany (2-0-0-3, 6 points) tied it at 17:10 when Christopher Fischer batted a pass to Thomas Greilinger, whose stick side blast beat goaltender Frederik Andersen. The goal came at 17:10 of the second with Fischer and Evan Kaufmann notching assists.
Gogulla put the Germans ahead at 8:36 of the third period. Patrick Reimer took a shot that was stopped by Anderson. He fanned on the rebound, but Gogulla got to it and knocked it past Andersen.
Denmark (0-0-1-4, 1 point) is last in the Stockholm group. The Danes are off Sunday and face Latvia on Monday. Germany plays Norway on Sunday.
Sweden 4, Italy 0
The Swedes rebounded from Friday's loss to Russia by blanking Italy in Stockholm to assure itself of a berth in the quarterfinals.
Sweden (5-0-0-1, 15 points) eliminated Italy from quarterfinals contention as Erik Karlsson and Gabriel Landeskog sparked the attack with a goal and an assist apiece. Marcus Kruger and Staffan Kronwall each added a goal for Sweden, and Henrik Zetterberg picked up two assists, swelling his team-leading total to nine.
Swedish goalie Viktor Fasth, last year’s tournament MVP, earned his first shutout for 2012. The Swedes outshot the Italians 42-19.
Kruger swatted the rebound of Karlsson's shot past Italian goaltender Daniel Bellissimo at 5:13 of the opening period, and Kronwall made it 2-0 with 48 seconds left by deflecting a high shot by Landeskog into the net.
At 5:45 of the second period, Karlsson gave Sweden a 3-0 lead at 5:45 of the second period, beating Bellissimo over the glove with a straightaway one-timer during a 5-on-3 power play. Landeskog closed the scoring 1:45 into the third period when he took a pass from Loui Eriksson, stepped off the goal line and slammed the puck past Bellissimo’s right skate. It was another big moment for the 19-year-old, who continues to earn the confidence of his coaches.
Italy (0-1-0-5, 2 points) has never beaten Sweden in 13 World Championship meetings dating back to 1935, registering three ties and 10 losses. After the game, Italian forward Marco Insam approached Zetterberg in the media mixed zone and asked for a photo with the Detroit Red Wings star -- a nice moment that also reflected the gap between the teams.
Sweden finishes round-robin play against Latvia on Tuesday. Italy meets Russia on Monday.
"We had a tough game yesterday [against Russia], and all the guys wanted to go into these two days off with a win," Fasth told the IIHF's website. "It was really good to win today."