After winning gold at the 2016 IIHF Men’s Championships in Russia, there was much anticipation that Winnipeg Jets’ centre Mark Scheifele would be one of the key offensive threats for Team Canada at this year’s tournament.
It was during the 2016 edition of this tournament that Scheifele was paired with Ottawa Senators forward Mark Stone and Buffalo Sabres forward Ryan O’Reilly, forming a potent second line . The trio combined for ten goals and seventeen assists en route to Canada’s second of back-to-back gold medal performances.
Fast forward to this year and Scheifele’s stat line has been much quieter. Garnering first line minutes alongside Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon and Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner, Schefiele had mustered only a single goal and four assists through the round robin portion of the tournament.
Today, however, Scheifele broke through in a big way, scoring a power play goal in first period and adding a secondary assist in the game’s middle stanza as Canada raced out to a 2-0 lead over the host Germans. Despite giving up a shorthanded goal in the third frame, Canada would go on to win by a 2-1 margin.
Jets’ defenseman Josh Morrissey - who is also suiting up for Canada - was held pointless in 9:16 of ice time.
Canada will now set its sights on their impending semifinal tilt with Russia on Saturday. Should they win, Canada will appear in their third straight gold medal final against the winner between Sweden and Finland.