College of Sports Media Game of the Night:
For the first time since 2004, Team Canada will battle Team USA for the gold medal at the World Junior Hockey Championships. Back then the Americans took the gold thanks to a mishandling of the puck by Canadian goalie Marc Andre Fleury. Fleury bounced a clearing attempt of his defenceman and into his own net for the game winning goal. Since then Canada has owned the tournament. They’ve won five straight times and are looking for number six tonight. These two teams have some history already in this tournament. On New Year’s Eve, they played with a bye to the semi-finals on the line. The US lead by two, but fell apart in the third allowing Canada to tie the game and force it into extra time. Overtime solved nothing so the shoot out was needed. Eventually the Canadians pulled off the 5-4 comeback win. Canada went on to beat the Swiss in the semi-finals, but come into this final game banged up and bruised. In their semi-final win, shut down defenceman Travis Hamonic separated his shoulder and will not be available to play. Alex Pietrangelo will move up to take his spot and pair up with Marco Scandella to match up against the American’s top line. More importantly they will be asked to asked to put the clamps on US captain Derek Stepan. Stepan leads the tournament with 12 points (3G/9A). Team USA will need to focus their defensive attention on Canadian forwards Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall. Eberle, who scored in the shoot out on New Year’s Eve, leads the tournament with 6 goals, while Hall trails his teammate by one.