MYTISCHI, Russia – Shane Doan’s goal in the first minute of play of the third period helped Canada to a 4-2 win over Norway and Canada’s second straight win at the 2007 World Hockey Championship on Monday.
Canada now has six points in two preliminary round games and is tied with Slovakia atop Group C in the 16-team tournament. Canada’s next game is Wednesday against Slovakia.
“That will be a great game,” said Doan. “It is more like the kind of game we want and need. They can skate and have a huge blueline, with (Zdeno) Chara back there.
“But we have a lot of room for improvement and we keep getting better. That seems to be the way for Canadian teams over here, getting better as the tournament keeps going.”
Rick Nash, Jason Chimera and Justin Williams also scored for Canada, while goalie Cam Ward made 21 saves for the win.
For the second straight game, the Canadians fell behind early, only to rally for the win. Seven years ago in St. Petersburg, Russia, Norway beat Canada 4-3 in what is considered the biggest victory in the country's history.
Norway had an 8-0 lead in shots in the opening minutes of the game and took the lead at 9:28 of the first period on a goal by Lars Spets. He grabbed a rebound in front of Ward, spun around and slipped a low wrist shot past the Canadian netminder for Norway’s only lead in the game.
The Canadians dug deep and came on strong and outshot their opponents 36-23.
“They didn’t give us a lot of room but we knew we had to find a way to win. That’s a good sign,” said Doan. “The hungrier we get, the better we play.”
Nash tied the game at 13:24 of the opening period on the first of three power-play goals the Canadians scored in the game.
Nash was to the left of goalie Pat Grotnes when he drove to the net with the puck on his stick and the Canadian forward beat the Norwegian netminder cleanly with a low shot for his first goal of the world tournament. Jonathan Toews assisted on the goal for his first point of the tournament and first point at the senior level one day after his 19th birthday.
“He played great for us in Finland (in pre-tournament games) and he’s going to be a great player,” said Doan of Toews.
Chimera put the Canadians ahead for the first time less than two minutes later, picking up a rebound behind the Norway’s net and completing the play with a wraparound goal at 15:17.
The lead lasted until 12:14 of the second when Jonas Anderson’s wrist shot from between the faceoff circles beat Ward cleanly high to the stick side.
Norway took a penalty in the last minute of play of the second period and Doan made them pay in the first minute of the third. He got his stick on a point shot by Eric Brewer to redirect the puck past Grotnes at 0:22.
“Brew just took the shot and I just got my stick on it. I just whacked the puck and the next thing I knew it was in.”
Williams iced the win at 9:44 with Canada’s third power play goal. Williams took the puck to the middle, between the faceoff circle, and his low shot hit something in front of the Norwegian net and the puck breezed past Grotnes for a 4-2 lead.
Canada is 14-for-14 in the penalty-killing department, and that is a statistic Doan finds very encouraging.
“What you find is the more success you have on the penalty kill, the better the chance of winning you have,” he said.