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Canada flips France 9-1

by Jen Sharpe / Edmonton Oilers
Oilers forward Jordan Eberle attemtps to cut towards the French net at the 2011 World Championship in Kosice, Slovakia Sunday, May 1, 2011.(Photo by Jukka Rautio / HHOF-IIHF Images)    
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Two days after opening the 2011 World Championship with a 4-1 win over Belarus, Team Canada was back in action and ready to face France Sunday.


Based on their narrow 3-2 victory over France in exhibition play one week ago, Canada couldn't take their opponents lightly.

In the first period, Canada went back and forth with France but emerged with a 3-0 lead thanks to expert snipes by Marc-Andre Gragnani, Jason Spezza, and Jeff Skinner, as well as strong goaltending from James Reimer.

France pulled Cristobal Huet in favour of Fabrice Lhenry at the start of the second period, and the club's forwards responded to the goaltending change: near the game's midway point, Pierre Edouard Bellemare slipped a power-play shot past Reimer to get France back within two.

But that's as close as they would get. Chris Stewart and Alex Pietrangelo added two to Canada's tally later in the second period, and a four-goal outburst in the third (including a successful penalty shot for Skinner) had Canada up 9-1 at the final buzzer.

Although the final score was lopsided, the close 39-33 shot count proves goaltending was the deciding factor. Reimer made 24 saves on 25 shots for the win, but Oilers goalie Devan Dubnyk wrapped the contest for Canada, making eight saves on eight shots in the final 14 minutes. The brief appearance was Dubnyk's first taste of World Championship play.

Edmonton's other representative on Team Canada, forward Jordan Eberle, struggled to find the net, registering one shot and finishing +1 in 12:39.


Can Oilers forward Magnus Paajarvi carry Team Sweden to victory over Austria Monday? Only time will tell. (Photo by Jukka Rautio / HHOF-IIHF Images)
The Canadians will take Monday off, returning to the ice Tuesday, May 3 vs Switzerland. At last year's tournament, the Swiss surprised the hockey world by defeating Canada 4-1 in the preliminary round. You can watch Canada's attempt to exact revenge live on TSN at 8:15am MT.

But not all the Oilers are resting Monday: Magnus Paajarvi and his fellow Swedes will face Austria at 12:15pm MT. That game will be webcast live.  

As always, follow the official Oilers Twitter account for updates on Oilers efforts in Slovakia, and visit for a game recap of each Team Canada and Team Sweden game. 

(all times mountain)

Friday, April 29:

Canada 4 - Belarus 1
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos | Highlights

Saturday, April 30:

Norway 5 - Sweden 4 (SO)
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos

Sunday, May 1:

Canada 9 - France 1
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos

Monday, May 2:

Sweden vs. Austria - 12:15 p.m.
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos | Highlights

Tuesday, May 3:

Canada vs. Switzerland - 8:15 a.m.
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos | Highlights

Wednesday, May 4:

Sweden vs. USA - 12:15 p.m.
Gamesheet | Recap | Photos | Highlights

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