Add the World Championship to the list of things that Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner
excels at in his first attempt.
Skinner, who turns 19 in two weeks, leads the tournament in scoring as of Monday morning with 5 points (3g, 2a) in just two games. Much as he was for most of his first professional season in the NHL, he is the youngest player in the 16-team event.
In Canada’s first game on Friday, Skinner scored what would hold up as the game-winning goal in the second period of a 4-1 victory over Belarus. He would add an assist on linemate John Tavares’ goal early in the third. Video of his goal – a great finish from in close – can be found at the 31-second mark of the video below.
On Sunday, Skinner led his team and became the first player to record a 3-point game in this year’s tournament with a 2 goal, one assist showing in the 9-1 rout of France. Skinner’s second goal came on a penalty shot in the third period.
Canada, the only team in Group B to earn the maximum number of points in its first two contests, next faces Switzerland on Tuesday.
Rounding out other Hurricanes’ representatives from the tournament’s opening weekend:
• Tuomo Ruutu, who is serving as an alternate captain for Finland, scored the final goal of his team’s 5-1 victory over Denmark on Saturday. His 17:45 of ice time ranked third on the team behind Minnesota’s Mikko Koivu and the KHL’s Juhamatti Aaltonen.
Finland plays its second game against Latvia on Monday.
• Ruutu’s goal came against Denmark’s Frederik Andersen, who was the Hurricanes’ final pick (seventh round, 187th overall) in last year’s Entry Draft. Andersen, a 21-year-old discovered by the Hurricanes’ scouting staff during the 2010 World Championship in Germany, made 39 saves on 44 shots against.
Andersen, who the Canes list at 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, plays in his country’s domestic league. Denmark will next face the Czech Republic on Monday.
• Defenseman Justin Krueger, who played four years at Cornell University prior to spending last season with Bern of the Swiss league, ranks third on Germany with an average of 18:13 of ice time in two games played. He’s tied for the team lead with four penalty minutes and has an even plus/minus rating.
Krueger, who recently signed his first professional contract with the Hurricanes, will help Germany improve to a surprising 3-0 start as his team faces Slovenia on Tuesday.