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Canada Remains Perfect at '08 World Championships

by Jay Levin / Nashville Predators
Alexander Radulov and Martin Erat each picked up his first points of the tournament, Marek Zidlicky netted the game-winning goal, and Dan Hamhuis and Canada used a late Dany Heatley goal to edge Team USA in an action packed Day 5 at the World Championships.

Erat and Zidlicky had break-out performances, combining to produce two goals and five points in Czech Republic's 7-2 win over Italy. Erat recorded his first point of the tournament with a goal 41 seconds into the game to give the Czechs a 1-0 lead. After Italy responded with a pair of goals, the teams skated into the first intermission tied 2-2. Zidlicky broke the tie with the game-winner 1:29 into the middle frame, with the first assist coming from Erat. Zidlicky added a second period helper, and Erat a third period assist as the Czech Republic offense came on late for a 7-2 win.

Radulov picked up an assist on the game's opening goal in Team Russia's 4-1 win over Denmark, Radulov's first point of the tournament. Russia finished the Preliminary Round in with 8 points (2 regulation wins and 1 overtime win), tops in Group D. The Czechs finished with seven points in the Preliminary Round on two wins and one overtime loss, good for second place in Group D and a spot in the Qualifying Round. Czech Republic and Russia will face the crossover teams from Group A in the Qualifying Round.

Hamhuis skated 19:21 of ice time in Canada's 5-4 win over USA, including drawing a roughing penalty for his part of a post-game skirmish right after the final whistle. The Canadians raced out to a 3-0 lead just 18 seconds into the second period, before the Americans answered with a pair of goals 2:17 apart in the early moments of the middle period. Canada pushed the lead to 4-2 early in the third frame, before the US struck for two goals 1:36 apart to tie the game before the midpoint of the third. With the game appearing to head toward overtime, Canada used a counter-attack to net the game winner at the 19:13 mark of the final frame as Dany Heatley converted from Ryan Getzlaf and Rick Nash.

Canada finished the Preliminary Round with a perfect 3-0 record, tops in Group B, while USA finished with a 2-1 mark, second in the group. Both will face crossover teams from Group C in the Qualifying Round.

Italy and Slovenia failed to advance to the Qualifying Round and will play in the Relegation Round to determine which countries remain in next year's World Championships.

Preds Scoring at the World Championships

Martin Erat (CZE) - 3 gp, 1g-2a, 9 shots
May 2 DEN (5-2 W) - 0g-0a, 3 shots, 20:10 ice time
May 4 RUS (4-5 OTL) - 0g-0a, 4 shots, 20:46 ice time
May 6 ITA (7-2 W) - 1g-2a, 2 shots, 15:03 ice time (scored game's opening goal, assisted on game-winning goal)
Advance to Qualifying Round (schedule to be announced later)
Dan Hamhuis (CAN) - 3 gp, 1g-0a, 3 shots
May 2 SLO (5-1 W) - 1g-0a, 2 shots, 17:47 ice time (scored game's opening goal)
May 4 LAT (7-0 W) - 0g-0a, 1 shot, 14:09 ice time
May 6 USA (5-4 W) - 0g-0a, 0 shots, 19:21 ice time
Advance to Qualifying Round (schedule to be announced later)

Patric Hornqvist (SWE) - 2 gp, 3g-0a, 15 shots
May 3 BLR (6-5 W) - 2g-0a, 9 shots, 15:41 ice time (tied score at 3-3 & 5-5)**
May 5 FRA (9-0 W) - 1g-0a, 6 shots, 14:34 ice time (leads tournament with 15 shots)
May 7 SUI - Wednesday

Ville Koistinen (FIN) - 2 gp, 0g-1a, 0 shots
May 3 GER (5-1) - 0g-0a, 0 shots, 17:26
May 5 NOR (3-2 OTW) - 0g-1a, 0 shots, 13:43 (assist on game's opening goal)
May 7 SVK - Wednesday

Janne Niskala (FIN) - 2 gp, 0g-1a, 3 shots

May 3 GER (5-1) - 0g-1a, 2 shots, 18:29 (assist on game's opening goal)
May 5 NOR (3-2 OTW) - 0g-0a, 1 shot, 17:11 ice time
May 7 SVK - Wednesday

Antti Pihlstrom (FIN) - 2 gp, 0g-1a, 4 shots
May 3 GER (5-1) - 0g-1a, 4 shots, 10:30
May 5 NOR (3-2 OTW) - 0g-0a, 0 shots, 7:03 ice time
May 7 SVK - Wednesday

Alexander Radulov (RUS) - 2 gp, 0g-1a, 4 shots
May 2 ITA (7-1 W) - DNP
May 4 CZE (5-4 OTW) - 0g-0a, 0 shots, 6:09 ice time
May 6 DEN (4-1 W) - 0g-1a, 4 shots, 12:00 ice time
Advance to Qualifying Round (schedule to be announced later)

Marek Zidlicky (CZE) - 3 gp, 1g-3a, 10 shots, 1 GWG
May 2 DEN (5-2 W) - 0g-0a, 2 shots, 22:33 ice time
May 4 RUS (4-5 OTL) - 0g-2a, 5 shots, 25:48 ice time
May 6 ITA (7-2 W) - 1g-1a, 3 shots, 21:48 ice time (game-winning goal)**
Advance to Qualifying Round (schedule to be announced later)

** denotes - named his team's Best Player of the Game
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