Nineteen year old Mikael Granlund propelled Finland to a surprising win over the favored Russians in the IIHF World Championship with an incredible lacrosse scoop style goal. The unassisted gem from Granlund wow’d the crowd, the announcers and the hockey world and put the Finnish up 1-0 in an exciting, hard fought hockey game that had a little bit of everything. If you haven’t seen the goal than you are missing what is easily the play of the tournament. With the score knotted at 0-0, Granlund skated behind the net, scooped the puck with his stick and slammed the puck passed the stunned Russian netminder, Konstantin Barulin. After a brief review the goal stood and the Russians were left scratching their heads.
The Fins put the game on ice in the third period with two more goals.
Finland took a 2-0 lead on a fluke goal that took a strange bounce and slid passed Barulin. The Russians began to unravel with a series of questionable penalties called against them. But, it was the New Jerseys Devils Russian star winger Ilya Kovalchuks slashing penatly that was the nail in the Russian coffin. Jarkko Immonen accepted a beautiful feed from Granlun with Kovalchuk in box to give Finland an insurmountable 3-0 lead.
The Russians had opportunities with the man advantage but they failed to capitalize. Russian finished the game 0-5 on the power play. It was the first time the Russians were shutout in the tournament. The Fins will meet the Swedes in Sundays Gold Medal Final. For New Jersey fans its a chance to see young stars Ansi Salmela face Finland and Mattias Tedenby for Sweden compete head to head for an IIHF gold medal. Kovalchuk and the Russians will take on Devils All-time leading scorer Patrik Elias and the Czech Republic for the bronze.
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Amazing Goal Propels Finland to the Final against Sweden
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