WORLDS RECAP: PENGUINS PLAYERS OFF TO STRONG START
WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – The 2023 IIHF World Championship has been underway for a week now, and the handful of Penguins players at the event have already left their mark.
PENGUINS CONNECTIONS TO THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
In the early stages of the preliminary round, the United States has been unbeatable. The team is 4-0-0 with a +13 goal differential.
Drew O’Connor has posted a goal and two assists in those four contests while averaging over 17 minutes per game. Furthermore, goaltender Casey DeSmith is 2-0 in his two starts, denying 53 of 56 shots faces for a .946 save percentage. For his efforts in the team’s opening victory over host Finland, DeSmith was named the United States’ player of the game.
France hasn’t experienced the same team success as the U.S. (it’s gone 1-1-2 with three of four games reaching overtime,) but Justin Addamo has been enjoying his first appearance at the World Championship. The 24-year-old has two goals, and his 62.5% mark in the face-off circle ranks eighth in the tournament.
The U.S. and France will meet in group play this coming Sunday, May 21. Puck drop is 1:20 p.m. ET.
As expected, Canada is rolling through Group B, but its greatest tests in Switzerland and Czechia are still to come. Penguins defenseman Pierre-Olivier Joseph is playing close to 19 minutes a game for the Canadians, posting one goal and a +6 rating.
Alex Nylander has scored one goal in three games for Sweden, a team that is undefeated despite a couple of close calls in its three contests. Nylander and the Swedes are on a collision course with Team USA on Tuesday, May 23 at 9:20 a.m. ET.
The full list of results and upcoming games can be found on the IIHF website.