It’s a light day at the World Juniors today with only a pair of games on the schedule before a full slate of games on New Year’s Eve. Here’s the latest from the tournament:
- Switzerland center Calvin Thurkauf, a seventh round pick (185th overall) of the Blue Jackets back in June, has been suspended for today’s game against Denmark for a slew-footing incident against Sweden, the IIHF announced. Thurkauf is tied for second in team scoring with two goals and an assist through the first two games. Columbus announced that they inked the 19 year old to a three year, entry level contract this afternoon. Financial terms were not disclosed.
- Canada forward Mitchell Stephens, one of Tampa Bay’s five prospects on the team, missed yesterday’s game against Latvia with a lower body injury. However, the injury isn’t believed to be serious as head coach Dominique Ducharme noted to TSN’s Mark Masters (Twitter link) that had it been a medal round game, Stephens could have been in the lineup.
- In their game against Latvia yesterday, Canada winger Taylor Raddysh (another of Tampa’s prospects) tied a Canadian record with four goals in a single game. He joins Philadelphia’s Brayden Schenn as well as former NHL forwards Mario Lemieux and Simon Gagne to hold that mark. The all-time record is held by Sweden’s Ola Rosander back in 1987.
- As a result of Denmark’s overtime win against the Czech Republic and Finland’s loss to Sweden yesterday, the Finns find themselves in real danger of being sent to the relegation round, a best-of-three series to determine who gets to stay in the tournament next year. As Masters notes (Twitter link), no defending champion has ever found themselves in the relegation round the following year. If Switzerland beats Denmark today, Finland will be guaranteed to finish last in Group A.