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Who and what to watch in bronze-medal game between Canada and Russia

Thursday, 01.03.2013 / 12:34 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Who and what to watch in bronze-medal game between Canada and Russia

UFA, Russia - A quick look at Saturday's bronze-medal game between Canada and Russia at the world junior men's hockey championship:

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Canada

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins — Held off the scoresheet in semifinal loss, Canada's captain needs to create scoring chances on top forward line.

Jonathan Drouin — A chance for 17-year-old forward to further raise his stock for the NHL draft.

Boone Jenner — A three-game suspension to start the tournament makes him the Canadian with the freshest legs.

Russia

Nikita Kucherov — Forward for the QMJHL's Rouyn-Noranda Huskies leads Russians in scoring.

Nail Yakupov — Has been guilty of trying to do too much on his own. Time to start distributing the puck.

Andrei Makarov — In his second season with Saskatoon Blades, knows North American shooters well.

KEYS TO THE GAME

Russia — Russia has relied too much on individual talent this tournament. Desire to win a medal on their home turf should bring them together.

Canada — Russia may feel emotionally drained after seeing their chance for gold die in a 3-2 shootout loss to Swedes. If so, Canada needs to exploit that and play with a desperation lacking in their semifinal loss to the U.S.

Quote of the Day

I don't think it's really truly going to sink in until we drop the puck, to be honest. I know there's going to be a lot of smoke and mirrors with the media attention and all that. We came [Monday] and it was sort of a light day to get things organized. We just want to focus in on the business aspect, the game itself. That's what we're preparing to do. Get these next couple of days out of the way and it's game on.

— Lightning captain Steven Stamkos on playing in his first Stanley Cup Final