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World Championship Update: May 9

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
Three Avalanche players and one prospect were in action Sunday at the IIHF Men’s World Championship in Germany.

Belarus Beats Kazakhstan
Defenseman Ruslan Salei, who is serving as Belarus’ captain at the World Championship, played a big role in his team’s 5-2 triumph over Kazakhstan on Sunday. Salei assisted on a power-play goal in the second period and then netted a power-play tally of his own in the third period. The blueliner’s goal gave Team Belarus a 4-2 advantage with just under 10 minutes left in regulation.

Salei fired two shots on goal during the contest and held an even plus/minus rating in a game-high 24:02 of ice time.

Next Up For Belarus:
Salei and his teammates will take on Slovakia on Tuesday.

Slow Start For Slovakia
Peter Budaj was tested early and often by Team Russia, the defending IIHF Men’s World Champions, during their matchup on Sunday.

Budaj faced 31 shots through the first two periods (stopping 29), while his Slovakian teammates only managed to put 19 shots on Russian netminder Vasili Koshechkin. The tables were turned in the final frame, however, as Slovakia held a 14-3 shot advantage and finally got on the scoreboard 3:51 into the period.

It ended up being too little too late, as an empty-net goal in the final minute gave Russia a 3-1 victory.

Budaj finished with 31 saves for Slovakia, while Marek Svatos recorded one shot on goal in 17:16 of ice time.

Next Up For Slovakia: Budaj and Svatos will see a familiar face when Slovakia faces Salei and Belarus on Tuesday.

Norway Drops Opener
Defense prospect Jonas Holos and Norway opened their tournament with a 5-2 loss to Sweden.

Holos, who led all players at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in ice time, skated for a game-high 29:42 in the contest. The defenseman assisted on Patrick Thoresen’s power-play goal just 20 seconds into the middle frame, a tally that cut Norway’s deficit to 2-1 at the time.

Next Up For Norway: Holos and Team Norway will be back in action Tuesday when they take on the Czech Republic.

What’s On Tap
Three Avalanche players will suit up at the IIHF World Championship on Monday.

USA/Denmark: T.J. Galiardi, Joe Sacco and the United States will look to bounce back from a tournament-opening loss to Germany when they face Denmark tomorrow. Team USA dropped a 2-1 overtime decision to the host country on Friday in front of a world-record crowd of 77,803. Denmark is coming off a big 4-1 victory over Finland in its opening game.

Canada/Latvia: Kyle Cumiskey and Matt Duchene will look to keep Team Canada rolling when the squad faces off with Latvia on Monday. The Canadians opened the tournament with a 5-1 triumph over Italy on Saturday, while Latvia began the event with a 3-1 loss to Switzerland.
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