Evgeni Malkin and Team Russia will be looking to defend their gold medal against Sidney Crosby and Team Canada in the title game of the 2015 World Championship on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network.
This will be the third time that the two-headed monster goes head-to-head in international play. Crosby and Malkin previously faced off in the 2005 World Junior Championship and 2010 Olympics, with Canada winning both games by a combined score of 11-4. However, Canada lost to Russia in the gold medal game in consecutive years in 2008 and '09 and hasn't been back to the title game since. Meanwhile, Russia has medaled in five of the last seven years.
Both players have nine points in eight games played this tournament (they each sat out one game). Crosby has recorded at least one in each of his appearances, totaling three goals and six assists, while Malkin has four tallies and five helpers.
Crosby and Canada earned the first spot in the championship game by beating the host Czech Republic 2-0 on Saturday morning. Crosby finished with an assist in the game when he set up his team's first goal 8:40 into the first period.
It was a magnificent play that started when Crosby caught a pass in his skates, kicked it to his blade and sprung linemate Jordan Eberle through a seam and behind the D. Eberle slid it over to Oilers teammate Taylor Hall, who tapped it in for an easy score.
Watch the goal here: http://www.tsn.ca/video/whc-in-game-hall-finishes-nice-pass-from-eberle-1.284502
Malkin and Russia earned the right to defend their title when they defeated the United States, 4-0, on Saturday afternoon.
Russia broke the game open in the third, starting when Sergei Mozyakin opened the scoring 7:17 into the period. It was the first of four unanswered goals, capped off with an empty-netter from Malkin with 1:25 left to play in regulation. He stole the puck in his own zone and went the other way on a 2-on-0 with Alex Ovechkin. They played catch a few times before Malkin ended up with it and ripped it into the open cage.