While the team that drafted John Gibson prepares to play a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the 19-year-old goaltender experienced a special moment of his own Sunday at the 2013 IIHF World Championship.
Gibson stopped all 30 shots he faced for his first shutout of the tournament and the United States clinched a berth in the quarterfinals by recording a 3-0 win over Germany in a preliminary-round game played at Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
Already the MVP of the World Junior Championship earlier this year, Gibson, a second-round pick of the Anaheim Ducks in the 2011 NHL Draft, has allowed just one goal in winning both of his starts at the World Championship.
"Gibson was unbelievable again, like he was against Finland," Stastny told the IIHF website. "He gave us a chance to win."
Gibson received support from Bobby Butler, Paul Stastny and Stephen Gionta, all of whom scored goals.
"The team's playing really well in front of me and they make my job a lot easier," Gibson said. "Whenever I leave a rebound or something, they're there to help me out."
Gibson had an early cushion, as Butler converted on the power play at 2:39 of the first period and Stastny scored off his own rebound at the 4:53 mark.
Gionta provided some insurance with 8:33 left in the third, taking Nate Thompson's feed and beating Dennis Endras, who made 26 saves for Germany.
Both teams are off until Tuesday, when the United States faces Slovakia while Germany takes on France.
Canada 2, Czech Republic 1: Jeff Skinner scored the decisive goal off an end-to-end rush early in the third period at Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden.
Wayne Simmonds also scored for the Canadians, who received a stellar, 30-save effort from goalie Mike Smith.
Petr Koukal scored and Ondrej Pavelec stopped 23 shots for the Czech Republic.
Skinner scored at 6:55 for the game-winning goal, finishing the play with a wraparound that beat Pavelec. Smith earned the only assist.
"I didn't want to do much," Skinner told the IIHF website. "I wanted to take it around the net and squeak it in there. I think I may have got a little bounce off something."
Simmonds had opened the scoring on a power-play 11:01 into the first period. With Jakub Voracek in the penalty box for charging, he deflected Eric Staal's shot for his first goal of the tournament.
Koukal evened the score with 2:57 left in the first, converting the rebound of a Martin Hanzal shot, and it stayed that way until Skinner's heroics.
Canada is back in action Monday against Slovenia, while the Czech Republic plays Norway on Tuesday.
Switzerland 3, Norway 1: Roman Josi scored a shorthanded goal and later added an assist as Switzerland answered Canada's victory earlier in the day at Globe Arena and maintained its lead in the Stockholm group.
Simon Moser and Patrick von Gunten also scored and Martin Gerber made 16 saves for Switzerland, which will finish ahead of Canada if it beats Belarus in its final preliminary-round game on Tuesday or if Canada loses to Slovenia.
"We were already in the quarterfinals and could play without pressure, but Norway had a lot of pressure," defenseman Mathias Seger told the IIHF website. "We've lost a lot of important games to Norway over the last few years, so it was important to beat them. They've kept us out of the quarterfinals several times."
Ole-Kristian Tollefsen scored a power-play goal in the third period for Norway, which received 34 saves from Lars Haugen.
Moser scored 6:05 into the game, sweeping the rebound of a Martin Plüss shot in as he was falling to the ice. Josi doubled the lead with 4:27 left in the first, capitalizing on the rebound of an Andres Ambühl shot while Eric Blum was serving a cross-checking minor.
Von Gunten added a power-play goal with 25 seconds left in the middle period.
Russia 3, Slovakia 1: Alexander Radulov opened the scoring and then assisted on the game-winning goal by Ilya Kovalchuk as Russia rebounded and got back in the win column in a game at Hartwall Arena.
Denis Denisov also scored to back a 23-save effort by Ilya Bryzgalov.
Branko Radivojevic had a shorthanded goal and Jaroslav Janus stopped 20 shots for Slovakia.
Russia returns to the ice Monday against Austria.