Brock Nelson and Colin McDonald both scored (and considering the way Sound Tigers score on their birthdays*, it’s an upset Matt Donovan didn’t get in the act) as the U.S. opened the World Championship with a 6-1 win over host Belarus in Minsk**. Solid start all around. Russia also got off to a good start with an easy win over the Swiss. The Czech Republic tied Slovakia late on a goal by Jaromir Jagr, then Jakub Klepis won it in overtime. And we already What?ed about Canada, losing in a shootout to France. (With Keith Kaval and Steve Patafie running the show; linesman Paul Carnathan is over there, too.)
USA-Switzerland on Saturday afternoon.
Providence opened its series with the WBS Penguins with a flourish, beating the Pens 4-0 in Pennsylvania. Alexander Khokhlachev had three points on the four goals, all in the first 8:03, and the Bruins outshot the Pens 12-4 in the third. Out West, Trevor Smith helped the Marlies build a lead, and though Michael Davies’ goal helped Chicago cut into it, Toronto took Game 1 5-2.
Stockton and Bakersfield are playing Game 4 at this writing. Edit: Joel Broda again. Assisted on Jordan Knackstedt’s tying goal, then scored the winner with a minute and a half to go. The Thunder (who got a goal from Marc Cantin, his third in the past two playoff years) face elimination tomorrow night.
Darn it, Red Network. But we’ll take what we got: Four seasons and another season of something resembling the other four.
And finally: Martin St. Louis, a day after his mom died, decided with his family to play Game 5 in Pittsburgh with his team facing elimination. The CBC caught Sidney Crosby stopping by to shake St. Louis’ hand before the game.
Game 6 is Sunday night at 7.
*-Unscientific. But May 9 was the Unofficial Official Birthday of Islanders Defense Prospects: Donovan, Calvin de Haan and Mark Katic.
**-I’m in for a month of Tom Lehrer’s “Lobachevsky” popping into my head every time someone says “Minsk.”