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- January hasn't been a kind month for Lars Eller. He has just 12 points in 44 games, his lowest PPG average of any month.
With the round robin part of the tournament closing out Monday, both Alex Galchenyuk (USA) and Sebastian Collberg (Sweden) kept up their scoring momentum as both players will see quarter-final and semi-final action in Russia.
Galchenyuk kept up his impressive scoring pace as he now sits tied for second in scoring at this year’s championships. He assisted on the lone goal against Canada and went back to his first game form against Slovakia, picking up multiple points (a goal and an assist). While Canada did a good job in containing him, Slovakia had no answer for his strong play. He managed to produce a pair of assists against the group’s top teams and has had a successful tournament to-date racking up 2 goals and 5 assists, good for a tie for second in tournament scoring. He continues his solid play off the puck as well. Grade A.
Collberg assisted on Sweden’s first goal against a stubborn Latvian side and provided the eventual game winner late in the second period. It was his third powerplay goal of the tournament. He chipped in an assist against arch rival Finland in Sweden’s tough, group clinching victory Monday. While I haven’t been crazy about Collberg’s all around game, there is no denying he is lethal in front of the net. His round robin scoring totals stand at 3 goals and 2 assists. He’s put up the points but needs to be more responsible away from the play. Grade B+.
HW's Chief Editor Brian La Rose offers up his assessment of the prospects' play so far:
On Galchenyuk: "As much as I'd have liked to have seen him control the play more like he has with Sarnia, there's no denying he has had a quality tournament. Opponents have keyed in on him for a lot of the play and he has still found ways to produce and help his team. As the games become more important (they're all must-wins now), I'll be eagerly watching to see if he can step up a notch. Worth noting, he is one of two 18-year old players inside the top-10 in tournament scoring." Grade B+.
On Collberg: "As much as it's nice to see that he's a go-to player on Sweden's powerplay where all of his points have come, it's a little disconcerting that he has been really quiet without the man advantage. Like Galchenyuk, he isn't on a top line seeing prime ice time but I was hoping his all-around game would have been stronger. Still, he has been an important player for the Swedes and has found a way to hit the scoresheet every game. Worth noting, he is the other of the two 18-year old players that is top-10 in tournament scoring." Grade B.
Galchenyuk and Team USA will meet the Czech Republic January 2nd in the quarters while Collberg and Team Sweden joins Canada as semi-finalists watching the next round; their opponent will be the winner of Russia-Switzerland on January 3rd.
Highlights from the preliminary round action:
Galchenyuk scores vs Slovakia:
Collberg's points vs Latvia:
(He assisted on Sweden's first goal and scored their third)
- posted by Alex Létourneau
- World Juniors and Spengler Cup StatTracker posted by B. La Rose