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Finland, Slovakia win in relegation pool

by Adam Kimelman / NHL.com

Aleksander Barkov and Ville Pokka scored two goals each, and Markus Granlund had a goal and three assists as Finland started play in the relegation round with an 8-0 win against Germany on Thursday.

Joel Armia had a goal and two assists, and Miikka Salomaki and Artturi Lehkonen also had goals, and Janne Juvonen stopped all 15 shots as Finland outshot Germany 56-15.

Finland led 3-0 after two periods but blew the game open with five goals in third. Salomaki and Pokka scored in the first five minutes, and then Barkov, Pokka and Armia scored in a 2:30 span in the game's final minutes.

In the other relegation-pool game, Andrej Bires' second goal of the game helped Slovakia hold off Latvia for a 4-3 victory.

Slovakia led 3-1 after two periods, but Latvia got an early third-period goal from Nikita Jevpalovs and a goal midway through the period from Edgars Kulda to tie the game.

With 5:25 left in regulation, Bires scored to win it for Slovakia, which next plays Finland on Friday. Germany and Latvia also will play Friday, in the relegation-round finale.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

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