After sweeping the opening two games against the QMJHL earlier this week, Team Russia dropped its first contest versus the OHL all-stars by a score of 4-0 earlier tonight.
This continued the trend of the last seven years. Entering the game, teams from the OHL had beaten the visiting Russians 14 out of 14 times, outscoring them 66-24 in the process.
For those unfamiliar, the Subway Super Series is a annual six-game tournament that takes a team of Russian junior level all stars on a trip throughout Canada, where they play two games each against the QMJHL, OHL and WHL. The event also serves as an evaluation for the roster Canada assembles prior to the World Junior Championships.
This year, they have a total of six prospects playing, led by Russia’s Maxim Kitsyn – who led his team with four goals during last year’s series and was off to a red hot start again this year. In Monday’s opening game vs. the QMJHL (where he faced fellow prospects Nic Deslauriers and JF Bérubé) he had two goals and an assist.
On the other side of the ice was the OHL’s Tyler Toffoli, who had two goals in two games of the series last year.
Although the Kings moved up in the draft to select Toffoli in the second round this past June (and he’s been called the ‘steal’ of the draft by some), GM Brian Kilrea of the Ottawa 67s, his regular junior team, cautioned everybody to cool their jets a bit in an interview here earlier this summer – saying “He’s a great play maker, but he’s 18 years old and the expectations should be set accordingly. People should be patient with him and allow him to develop, including filling out physically.”
In this game he had one assist and was a plus-one.
After taking the weekend off, the series resumes on Monday night in Sudbury, ONT with a 4pm PST start.
It will be the final OHL vs. Russia game before the series moves on to the WHL later in the week.
Watch it all online for free – details here.
Interview with Tyler Toffoli – comments on the OHL vs. Russia games, plus being drafted by LA