The U.S. needed a quality result after its disappointing loss to Belarus, and one of its most in-form players delivered.
Islanders forward Brock Nelson scored the lone goal in the Americans’ 1-0 win over Denmark on Friday, pushing them back into first place in Group B at the World Hockey Championships in the Czech Republic.
Nelson, 23, scored an unassisted tally midway through the second period, the only shot to elude Danish netminder Sebastian Dahm on the day. The marker was the latest highlight in what’s been a terrific tournament for Nelson; he currently holds the team lead in scoring (six points) and has four goals through his first five games.
In goal, Winnipeg prospect Connor Hellebuyck stopped all 21 shots faced for the shutout and his third win of the tournament. Team USA head coach Todd Richards opted to give Hellebuyck the start after Dallas’ Jack Campbell was lit up in the aforementioned loss to Belarus, allowing five goals on 23 shots.
The Americans will next play on Sunday against Slovenia, then close out group play on Tuesday in a match against the Slovaks.
On Friday, Sharks owner Hasso Plattner made a significant move regarding the club’s future in San Jose, agreeing to a long-term lease extension at SAP Center that could potentially run through 2040.
From the club:
The Sharks have called SAP Center home since the building’s inception in 1993. The current lease agreement between the City and the Sharks, amended in 2001, runs through June 30, 2018. The newly-negotiated extension states that Sharks Sports & Entertainment will continue to manage and operate the City-owned SAP Center and that the Sharks will play their home games at the facility on a fixed-term through 2025 – ten calendar years from today’s date.
Beginning in 2026, the lease will renew on an annual basis through the year 2040.
“I am very pleased that we have been able to reach an agreement with the City of San Jose to keep the Sharks where they belong – in downtown San Jose,”Plattner said in a statement. “I love this arena and this is the only place we want to call home.”
Today’s announcement further cements SAP as the home for hockey in the Bay Area. Starting next season, the club’s relocated AHL affiliate — the San Jose Barracuda — will also play at SAP, becoming one of two American League teams to play in the exact same rinks that their NHL parents call home (the Manitoba Moose, Winnipeg’s recently-relocated AHL affiliate, will play at the MTS Center, just like the Jets.)
“This is a tremendous opportunity for our organization to amplify our player development program by providing our staff access to these players on a daily basis,” Sharks GM Doug Wilson said of the Barracuda move. “It’s also a chance for our fans to watch the growth of these prospects as players and see the ‘Future Sharks’ in action.”
The Blackhawks confirmed the expected on Friday, announcing that d-man Michal Rozsival would be lost for the remainder of the playoffs with a fractured ankle.
The injury, suffered during Thursday’s series-clinching win over Minnesota, looked nasty when it happened and head coach Joel Quenneville offered little optimism following the game, saying “tough loss,” and “doesn’t look good.”
Rozsival, 36, has been with Chicago for the last three years and was a fairly integral part in the Stanley Cup win of ’13, appearing in all 23 games while averaging 19:16 TOI per night. While his role has diminished somewhat recently, he was still averaging over 17 minutes in these playoffs; with Rozsival now unavailable for selection, it looks as though Chicago will replace him with one of either David Rundblad or Kyle Cumiskey.
Related: Rozsival injury puts Chicago blue line that much more under the microscope