Of­fen­sive out­burst

MacKin­non scores hat trick as Canada beats Slove­nia at world hockey cham­pi­onship

Cape Breton Post - - Sports -

By his own ad­mis­sion he wasn’t win­ning any points for style, but Nathan MacKin­non’s of­fen­sive out­put helped power Canada to an­other strong per­for­mance at the world hockey cham­pi­onship.

MacKin­non scored a hat trick to lift Canada to a 7-2 win over Slove­nia on Sun­day. The vic­tory at Ac­corHo­tels Arena in Paris im­proved Canada’s record to 2-0.

“I thought the puck was fol­low­ing me around,” said MacKin­non, who was named Canada’s player of the game. “I had a cou­ple of greasy goals.”

MacKin­non also added an as­sist while Colorado Avalanche team­mate Tyson Bar­rie had a goal and three as­sists. Bar­rie now leads all play­ers in the tour­na­ment with six points.

“I’ve just been play­ing with good guys,” Bar­rie said when asked about the se­cret to his early-tour­na­ment suc­cess. “I haven’t re­ally done any­thing too spec­tac­u­lar. It’s just a mix­ture of try­ing to jump in the play and be avail­able. Th­ese guys...there’s ob­vi­ously so much skill on this team, they’ll find you.”

Bray­den Point, Mitch Marner and Jeff Skin­ner also had goals for Canada while Travis Konecny added three as­sists.

Chad John­son made 12 saves

in his first start of the tour­na­ment.

“It’s a lit­tle dif­fer­ent than in North Amer­ica with the ice sur­face and ev­ery­thing,” John­son said of his tour­na­ment de­but. “It was nice to get in there.”

The Cana­di­ans built a 5-0 lead be­fore Slove­nia got on the score­board, with Jan Mur­sak and Jan

Ur­bas record­ing a goal each.

“We got a les­son in how to play hockey to­day and I think, and hope, that we learned some­thing,” summed up Slove­nia’s coach Nik Zu­pan­cic af­ter the game.

Gasper Kroselj faced 51 shots in Slove­nia’s net. He was mak­ing his sec­ond start in as many

days af­ter giv­ing up four goals on 15 shots in the first pe­riod of Slove­nia’s 5-4 shootout loss to Switzer­land on Satur­day.

“It was one of those games, pucks were go­ing in for us,” said Canada’s coach Jon Cooper, who be­lieved his team was able to ben­e­fit from Slove­nia’s tough sched­ule.

AP PHOTO

Canada’s Nate Mackin­non, right, chal­lenges Slove­nia’s Sabahudin Ko­vace­vic, left, dur­ing the Ice Hockey World Cham­pi­onships in Paris, France on Sun­day.

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