Russia followed its disappointing finish at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi with a gold-medal triumph at the 2014 IIHF World Championships in Belarus.
The Russians defeated Finland 5-2 to claim their second title in the last three years and fourth in the last seven years.
They were led by superstar forwards Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Both players scored a goal, and Malkin’s second-period tally ended up being the game-winner. Russian winger Danis Zaripov tallied a game-high three points (one goal, two assists).
Finland took a 2-1 lead at 6:51 of the second period, but the Russians quickly tied the game with Ovechkin’s tally and proceeded to score a total of four unanswered goals to secure the victory. Russian goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky made 24 saves for his first international medal since he won bronze at the 2008 World Junior Championships.
The defeat gave Finland its first silver medal since 2007. The Fins last won gold in 2010.
Next year’s tournament will be played in the Czech Republic (Prague and Ostrava) from May 1 through 17.