Russia's Anton Slepyshev, right, is congratulated by team mate Nikita Zadorov after Slepyshev scored 3-4 in the World Junior Hockey Championships quarter final between USA and Russia in Malmo, Sweden on Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014. (AP Photo / TT News Agency / Andreas Hillergren) ** SWEDEN OUT **

Team USA falls to Russia in World Juniors Quarterfinals


The United States were not able to defend their 2013 gold medal winning run in this year’s World Junior Championship.

After falling short in their match against Canada in the Preliminary round, Team USA was forced to play against Russia in the Quarterfinals.

The Americans got off to a strong start and held a 3-2 lead through the first 20 minutes. Stefan Matteau, who the New Jersey Devils took with the 29th overall pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, led the charge for Team USA with a goal and an assist.

Buffalo Sabres prospect Nikita Zadorov turned things around for Russia in the second period by scoring back-to-back goals over the span of just 61 seconds. Pavel Buchnevich collected the empty netter with 28 seconds remaining to finalize Russia’s 5-3 victory.

Team USA’s Jon Gillies allowed four goals on 24 shots while Andrei Vasilevski made 30 saves.

Russia will advance to play the winner of Sweden versus Slovakia in the Semifinals.

Memorial Cup champion goalie Appleby signs with Devils

Ken Appleby
The Canadian Press via AP
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Ken Appleby never got drafted, but his efforts during the New Jersey Devils’ training camp have earned him an entry-level contract, per the Bergen Record.

Although no team saw it fit to take him before the preseason, the 20-year-old is coming off of a very strong season. He had a 2.08 GAA and .924 save percentage in 50 games with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. He went on to lead them to a Memorial Cup championship and earned the the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the tournament’s top goalie.

Appleby is the fifth goaltender the Devils have under contract after Cory Schneider, Keith Kinkaid, Scott Wedgewood, and Yann Danis. He’ll likely begin the season in the ECHL.

Alexandre Goulet and Jacob Sweeney also participated in the Devils’ training camp on an amateur tryout basis, but both of them have been released.

PHT Morning Skate: NHL stars weigh in on McDavid

Connor McDavid
The Canadian Press via AP
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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Some of the NHL’s top players discuss Connor McDavid‘s potential and the hype surrounding him. (Toronto Sun)

While we’re on the subject, Wayne Gretzky recalls what it was like for him going into the NHL and what’s in store for McDavid. (Edmonton Sun)

Sam Gagner is about to start a key season in his career. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

It’s time for the Washington Capitals to make some tough calls, particularly when it comes to Derek Roy. (CSN Mid-Atlantic)

With Raffi Torres hearing scheduled for today, here’s a look back at his suspension history. (San Jose Mercury News)

The Chicago Blackhawks have gotten their championship rings. (