All four Flames played their penultimate games of the round robin today.
Team Canada and Sean Monahan
Bad news: Monahan still isn't getting a lot of ice time.
Good news: His ice time isn't that far off from Mark Scheifele's.
Alex Burrows is out, so Team Canada is down to 12 forwards, including Monahan. His linemates were Scheifele and Joel Ward, while Jonathan Huberdeau got a promotion. Canada beat Team Sweden by a score of 3-2 in OT off a Ryan Ellis redirect from a patient Scheifele pass.
Monahan played 7:40 total (Scheifele played 8:27, but 1:19 of that came in OT). He had no shots on net and won three of four faceoffs. He was not on the ice for any goals.
Team Sweden and Mikael Backlund
Bad news: Backlund was pointless in the 3-2 overtime loss.
Good news: He was one of Team Sweden's leaders in all other areas on the ice.
Backlund played 20:10, just one of three Swedes to hit the 20-minute mark (the other two were defencemen Mattias Ekholm and Tim Erixon, who still sucks). He led the team with 4 shots on net (including an OT chance), tied with Johan Fransson and Oscar Moller. He took 20 faceoffs, 11 of which he won. He was on the ice for Sweden's first goal, and none against.
Basically, while Backlund didn't necessarily stand out on the scoreboard, he did pretty much everything possible to help his team win. He was a constant force on the ice, and one of Sweden's best players and leaders, as he has been all tournament.
So, yet again: always remember that Mikael Backlund rules.
Team USA and Johnny Gaudreau
Bad news: Gaudreau's ice time dropped, and he had no points.
Good news: Team USA defeated Team Finland 3-1, and despite their earlier losing streak, secured a spot in the quarterfinals.
Gaudreau only played 14:51 today, but he was still fifth in ice time for American forwards. He had one shot on net and wasn't on the ice for any goals.
Team USA rode their top line hard today. Gaudreau's ice time may seem a little low - and for him, relatively, it is - but when you look at the fourth line, who only got to play around seven minutes each, it's not that bad overall. Outside from the top line, not many Americans had many shots on net either.
Team Czech Republic and Jiri Hudler
Bad news: No points for Hudler, and he barely played today.
Good news: The Czechs defeated the Norwegians 1-0, and are closer to a spot in a quarterfinals.
Hudler only played for 9:58 today, the lowest out of all Czech players who stepped on the ice. Despite this, he still managed to have two shots on net, both in the third period while the Czechs were protecting their 1-0 lead.
All of the Flames just have one round robin game left each. Backlund's is tomorrow against Team Italy at 11:45 a.m. MT; while Monahan, Gaudreau, and Hudler face off against the Norwegians, the Germans, and the French on Tuesday. The Canadians, Swedes, and Americans have all secured quaterfinal berths, while the Czechs are likely to do so soon.