The last berth in the Memorial Cup will be decided tonight in London, as Alex Lepkowski
(2011, 5th round) and the Barrie Colts visit the Knights in Game 7 of the OHL Championship (7 p.m.). Barrie had a chance to close out the series on Saturday at home, but they dropped a 5-4 overtime decision on Ryan Rupert’s game winner at 1:30 of the extra period.
Lepkowski enters tonight’s win-or-go-home contest with four points (2+2) in 21 playoff games, with three of those points (1+2) coming in the Championship series. The blueliner’s only goal of the series was the game-winner in Barrie’s 6-3 victory in Game 3.
While Barrie and London drag their series out, goaltender Andrey Makarov has been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Memorial Cup for the last seven weeks. Makarov’s Saskatoon Blades are the hosts of this year’s event, but haven’t played a game since being swept 4-0 in the first round of the WHL Playoffs by Medicine Hat. When Saskatoon hosts the OHL Champion in the tournament’s opening game on Friday night at the Credit Union Centre, it will be their first game action since March 27 – a span of 51 days.
Makarov played all but 38 minutes in Saskatoon’s first-round setback, posting an 0-4 record with a 3.66 GAA and .897 save%. This was out of character for the 20-year-old Russian, after he finished the regular season with 37 wins and seven shutouts, along with a 2.62 GAA and .919 save%.
The Portland Winterhawks (WHL) and Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL) round out the four-team lineup in this year’s round-robin tournament. Portland features top-rated draft prospect Seth Jones, while the Mooseheads lineup boasts both Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin, the second- and third-ranked North American skaters. Drouin was named the MVP of the QMJHL Playoffs with 35 points in 17 games, as the Mooseheads pillaged their competition by going a combined 16-1 in four playoff series wins.
SABRES IN THE 2013 IIHF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Christian Ehrhoff (Germany, 2-0-1-3, 7 pts.)
Stats: 6 GP, 1-2-3, 10 PIM, -1, 17 SOG, 28:16 TOI/game
Up Next: Tues. vs. France
Thomas Vanek (Austria, 1-1-0-5, 5 pts.)
Stats: 7 GP, 4-2-6, 2 PIM, -2, 33 SOG, 20:15 TOI/game
Andrej Sekera (Slovakia, 2-0-1-3, 7 pts.)
Stats: 6 GP, 0-1-1, 2 PIM, -5, 7 SOG, 24:58 TOI/game
Up Next: Tues. vs. USA
Jhonas Enroth (Sweden, 4-0-0-2, 12 pts.)
Stats: 4 GP, 3-0-0-1, 1 SO, 1.30 GAA, .941 save%
Up Next: Tues. vs. Denmark
Zemgus Girgensons (Latvia, 2-0-0-4, 6 pts.)
Stats: 4 GP, 1-0-1, 0 PIM, -2, 8 SOG, 16:55 TOI/game
Up Next: Tues. vs. Finland
* Team records are listed as W-OTW-OTL-L
** Teams receive 3 pts for regulation win; 2 pts for OT win; 1 pt for OTL; 0 pts for regulation L