Among Penguins Hornqvist best so far at World Championships
There are a few Penguins participating in the World Championships over in Slovakia this year. Among them are Evgeni Malkin, Matt Murray, Patric Hornqvist, Jared McCann, and Teddy Blueger. The World Championships are always an interesting tournament in the sense that the rosters are all over the place. Certain years countries will get their best players showing up and other years the rosters are bare.
I don’t read too much into this tournament. It can be a nice source of entertainment, but I don’t take much from an analysis standpoint. It’s a small sample and there are a lot of countries whose teams are not NHL caliber. That said, here’s what the Penguins have been up to.
He is one off the tournament lead in goals. Evgeni Dadonov has six goals and Hornqvist is right there with five. He scored once against the Czech Republic in a 5-2 loss and scored twice against both of Great Britain and Norway. He’s playing with Elias Pettersson and William Nylander. Sweden doesn’t have the forward depth they are normally capable of. They are going with the top heavy approach and so far it is working out.
Malkin has three assists in four games played. He is playing with Evgeni Dadonov and Mikhail Grigorenko. Russia is spreading their talent among the four lines with Malkin, Ovechkin, Kucherov, and Kovalchuk all playing on separate lines at even-strength.
Who knows maybe this a preview of Dadonov and Malkin for the eventual Malkin trade to Florida.
Blueger has a goal and two assist in his three games. Latvia doesn’t have a lot of NHL talent on their roster so believe it or not Blueger will be one of their go to players. He had two assists against Austria in a 5-2 victory. This experience is certainly not a bad thing for Blueger. It’s always nice to go from being a scratch/depth player to a higher role. A nice mental boost.
McCann has two assists in three games. He is on the third line with Kyle Turris and Anthony Mantha. At the moment Canada is up 3-0 over France and McCann does not have a point on any of the three goals.
Murray is 1-1 with a save percentage of .877. He lost 3-1 to Finland and was the winning goaltender against Slovakia despite giving up five goals. He was named Canada’s starting goaltender. If there isn’t an uptick in his play you might see Carter Hart get more than a spot start (he is starting vs France today).
Thanks for reading!