It took one rather gutsy decision by Finland’s Mikael Granlund that would eventually break Russia’s bid for their fourth straight gold-medal game as Finland beat Russia for the second time in the 2011 Men’s World Championships earlier today. Granlund scored what would stand as the game-winner when he accurately executed a lacrosse-like goal which has since gone viral and even has the likes of TSN calling it the goal of the year.
Granlund’s goal would break the scoreless game as Russia, for the second night in a row, headed into the final frame down 1-0. With time slowly winding down Jani Lajunen scored a bizarre goal as his shot from a bad angle managed to sneak behind Konstantin Barulin and somehow cross the goal line to make the comeback that much harder. Unlike yesterday, nothing ever clicked for Sbornya as Alexander Ovechkin and Ilya Kovalchuk were called on very light slashing calls with Kovy’s costing the team a goal thanks to Jarkko Immonen. Ovechkin, in 5 games has registered zero points since joining the team after being eliminated by the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Russia would fail to really test Petri Vehanen the rest of the way as he would hang on for his first shutout of the tournament as his team advances to face Sweden for gold while Russia meets the Czech Republic for the second time this tournament in a re-match of last year’s final. Granlund’s goal can be found below.