EDMONTON – Mark Scheifele finally finished, and Mark Visentin is starting again.
That’s the latest out of Team Canada on Thursday morning, beginning with the visible relief on the face of Winnipeg Jets first-round pick Scheifele, who scored twice on on the power play in a 5-0 victory over the Czech Republic on Wednesday night at Rexall Place.
Scheifele entered the tournament as Team Canada’s No. 1 centre but was held off the score sheet in the Canucks’ 8-1 thumping of Finland on Monday. But paired on a power play play unit with fellow Barrie Colt Tanner Pearson, Scheifele scored twice in the final period to get off the World junior schneid, as Canada improved to 2-0.
"It felt great," Scheifele said Thursday morning. "It was a good feeling to be able to help the team like that. You get that monkey off your back and feel a little more confident. I was definitely putting pressure on myself. That’s how you can motivate yourself is by adding that extra pressure and trying to get the best out of yourself. To get that one (first goal) is a weight off your shoulders."
The Canucks will face Denmark tonight, and Canadian head coach Don Hay revealed this morning that Mark Visentin will be back between the pipes for his club tonight.
Visentin, a returnee from last year’s silver medal squad in Buffalo, opened the tournament against Finland, with 24 saves. But Hay turned to Scott Wedgewood against the Czech Republic, and the Plymouth Whalers (OHL) netminder, a draft pick of the New Jersey Devils, responded with a solid 26-save performance for the shutout.
"Our reasoning is both goalies are playing well and we want to make sure everybody is sharp for the next game on New Year's Eve (against Team USA) and both guys are going good right now," Hay explained. "We want to make a decision (on Saturday goalie) after tomorrow."