Canada beats Finland in OT for 19th world junior title, UM's Johnson scores winner

Associated Press

Edmonton, Alberta — Michigan forward Kent Johnson scored at 3:20 of three-on-three overtime to give Canada a 3-2 victory over Finland on Saturday night for its record-extending 19th world junior hockey title.

Johnson tucked home his own rebound after Canada blew a two-goal lead in third period. The Canadians were 7-0 in the postponed event.

Canada forward Mason McTavish raises the trophy after defeating Finland in the gold medal game at the world junior hockey championship on Saturday.

After being credited with just 13 shots over the first two periods, the Finns launched 17 shots on net in the third, with Aleksi Heimosalmi and Joakim Kemell scoring to send it to overtime.

The Canadians had plenty of chances to bury the Finns, but went 0-for-7 on the power play in regulation.

Joshua Roy and William Dufour scored for Canada, and Dylan Garand made 29 saves. With two assists in the game, Mason McTavish was the tournament’s top scorer, with eight goals and nine assists. He was the tournament MVP.

But McTavish’s finest moment was clearing what looked to be a tournament-winning effort from Topi Niemela off the goal line just seconds before Johnson notched the deciding goal.

In the third-place game, Sweden beat the Czech Republic, 3-1.

Isak Rosen, Fabian Lysell and Linus Sojodin scored for Sweden and Jesper Wallstedt made 27 saves.

“You strive to win the last game,” said Rosen, a Buffalo Sabres prospect. “Of course we wanted the gold, but better bronze than nothing.”

Michael Gut scored for the Czech Republic and Tomas Suchanek stopped 20 shots.

The tournament originally opened Dec. 26 in Edmonton and Red Deer. Rising COVID-19 cases among players and officials caused the forfeiture of games and the event was halted after just four days.