Canada’s quest to earn a medal at this year’s World Junior Championships fell short as Russia earned a 2-1 win against them to take bronze.
Sabres prospect Mikhail Grigorenko and forward Eduard Gimatov while Lightning prospect goalie Andrei Vasilevski made 30 saves to earn the win. Jets prospect Josh Morrissey had Canada’s lone tally while Canadiens prospect Zach Fucale saved 30 shots.
Canadian captain, and Flyers prospect, Scott Laughton said the loss was a disappointment.
“It’s tough,” said Laughton “You can’t put it into words. When you put on this crest and try to represent your country, and can’t even bring a medal back to Canada for the people who’ve been cheering for you and have 4,000 fans come down here, it’s heartbreaking.”
It’s the second consecutive year Canada has failed to medal in the tournament.
Grigorenko’s goal was his fifth of the tournament and now he’ll return to Buffalo where his future is up in the air. He’s ineligible to be sent to the AHL (too young) and the Sabres have been leery/unable to send him back to his junior team, the Quebec Remparts.
All week leading up to the 2012 NHL Entry Draft in Pittsburgh, we’ll be profiling top prospects who may hear their names called Friday in the first round. Nothing too in-depth. Just enough so you know who they are and what they’re about.
Andrei Vasilevski (G)
Height: 6’3 Weight: 204 Shoots: Right
Team: Tolpa Ufa (KHL Jr.)
NHL Central Scouting ranking: No. 1 among European goalies
What kind of player is he?
He draws comparisons to other big Russian netminders like Ilya Bryzgalov, Semyon Varlamov and Sergei Bobrovsky. Many believe he’s ahead of the curve when it comes to positioning, which is a great sign considering his frame.
Vasilevski managed an astounding .953 save percentage at the World Juniors and put up fantastic individual numbers at Russia’s junior level as well. It’s tough to predict where he’ll go given the current state of the goaltending market (read: flooded) but some projections have him as a low first rounder and quite possibly the first netminder off the board.
“Vasilevski is a terrific athlete with very good bio-mechanics. His balance points and strong core allow him to seal the ice with a very wide, but very powerful butterfly. This is going to make him look extremely attractive to many NHL teams.” — Justin Goldman, via the Edmonton Journal
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