An impressive victory by Germany over Finland prevented the Finns from securing the top spot in the Group A standings at the World Championship on Tuesday.
Prior to meeting Germany, Finland had been one of the better teams defensively in Group A with a group low seven goals against.
On Tuesday, the Finns gave up four goals to the Germans, the most goals conceded in a single game for Finland at this year's tournament. Led by Leon Draisaitl (Edmonton Oilers) Germany defeated Finland 4-2. Draisaitl scored two third period goals in the victory, as both teams wrap up the preliminary portion of play.
Top European prospect Kaapo Kakko was held without a point for Finland. Kakko had four shots on goal and his 19:23 of ice time led all Finnish skaters.
The game between Finland and Germany certainly had seeding implications. Had Finland won, they would have secured the top spot in Group A, which is now up for grabs when Team Canada and Team USA play later today at 2:15 p.m. EDT. Germany has momentarily overtaken the United States for third in the standings with 15 points in seven games played.
CZECH REPUBLIC 5, SWITZERLAND 4
Switzerland: Nico Hischier
Nico Hischier and the Swiss squad are locked into a fourth-place finish in the Group B standings after a 5-4 loss to the Czech Republic on Tuesday.
With just under two minutes left on the clock, the Czech Republic took a 5-4 lead, scoring into an empty net to seal the Swiss' fate.
New Jersey Devils forward Nico Hischier, who leads all Swiss players with eight points, added another assist against the Czech Republic. Hischier picked the pocket of a Czech player to skate the puck into the offensive zone and feed his teammate Roman Josi (Nashville Predators) with Nino Neiderreiter (Carolina Hurricanes) finishing off the play to tie the game 4-4 at the 16:19 mark and breath some hope into the Swiss squad before the Czech Republic found the empty net with 1:27 to play.
Switzerland finishes fourth in the Group B standings, sending them to Kosice to face the winner of Group A on Thursday for the start of quarterfinal play. Switzerland had previously been based in Bratislava. The Czech Republic await the winner of the Sweden-Russia game to determine their final spot in the Group B standings.
SLOVAKIA 2, DENMARK 1 (SO)
Slovakia: Marian Studenic
It took a shootout to settle the score between Slovakia and Denmark on Tuesday, the final game of the tournament for both teams.
Sixty minutes of play ended in a 1-1 draw and overtime still didn't settle anything. It took five rounds of the shootout before Slovakia was named the winner. 39-year-old Ladislav Nagy, in his hometown of Kosice, scored the first successful shootout attempt before Michal Kristof added another for Slovakia who edged Denmark in the shootout 2-1.
The game marked the final game of Nagy's career, retiring after competing in eight World Championships, and a lengthy NHL and KHL career. He scored 37 goals in 122 matches for his national team, his final shot - a successful shootout goal.
Devils prospect Marian Studenic assisted on Slovakia's regulation time goal and was called upon as the first Slovakian shooter in the shootout, though his shot went wide of the Danish net. Studenic ends his first run with the men's national team with five points (one goal, four assists) in six games played.
CANADA 3, USA 0
Canada: Damon Severson, Mackenzie Blackwood United States: Cory Schneider, John Hynes, Jack Hughes
Team Canada has clinched first in the Group A standings after a 3-0 shutout victory over the United States.
The two rival nations met in their final game of preliminary play with first place on the line on Tuesday. Canada jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 1:49 into the first period and gave them the only edge over the Team USA they would need. Canada scored once again in the first at the 8:02 mark and again in the second period to seal the US fate. The Canadians have won six straight games at the World Championship since opening with a 3-1 loss to Finland.
Cory Schneider was in the net for the Americans and had little to no chance on Canada's two scoring chances in the first period. Schneider made 33 saves on 36 shots faced in the loss, including facing 18 shots along in the second period.
American Jack Hughes was scratched against the Canadians with Johnny Gaudreau healthy enough to play for the stacked USA roster.
For Canada, Devils defenseman Damon Severson played a team-high 20:07. He finishes the preliminary portion of the tournament with five points in seven games and a plus-8 rating. Goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood did not dress.
The win for Canada sets up a favorable quarterfinal matchup, with Switzerland traveling to Kosice for the Thursday game. Team USA drop to fourth in the Group B standings and have a much more difficult task of facing the undefeated Russian's in Bratislava in the quarterfinals.
RUSSIA 7, SWEDEN 4
Sweden: Jesper Bratt
The Russians remain perfect at the World Championship after a dominant 7-4 victory against Sweden on Tuesday.
The Russians scored six goals in the second period for a 6-1 edge. In the final eight minutes of the game, Sweden made one final push to try and topple Russia scoring three goals in a six-minute span to bring the score to 7-4.
7-4 would be where the score would remain as Sweden drop their second game of the tournament and fall to third place in the Group B standings.
Devils forward Jesper Bratt was back and playing a more significant role for Sweden on Tuesday in terms of ice time. Bratt was held off the scoreboard in his 9:35 of play and had two shots on net.
With preliminary play now complete, Russia finishes atop the Group B standings and will face the United States in quarterfinal play while Sweden will travel to Kosice and face their bitter rivals, Finland on Thursday.