Ennis with two points, Myers steady in win; Vincour makes the list

Tyler Ennis scored a goal and an assist as Canada opened their quest for a fifth consecutive WJC gold medal with a 8-1 trouncing of the Czech Republic. I'm not going to go into details about John Tavares, Cody Hodgson, and Zach Boychuk, but they all played great games. Ennis scored the fifth goal for Team Canada in their dominant second period when he buried a Brett Sonne chip from behind the net. Ennis started the play by winning a one-on-one along the boards to get the puck deep to Sonne's area behind the Czech cage. He'd later add an assist when he dropped a loose puck right onto the stick of DiDomenico to make it 6-0. Earlier on that shift, he showed great deftness in transition, taking the puck on his backhand and quickly cradling it through his legs to his forehand in the neutral zone before dishing it off. The Edmonton-born winger started the game well on a 5-4 PP in the first. Along with Jamie Benn and Chris DiDomenico, the trio twice set-up a streaking DiDo for two of the better chances in the period. His quick feet were on display all evening, allowing him to both shoot into the zone with the puck where he gets toe-drag wristers off quickly, and to also close quickly defensively to create pressure on the opposing carrier. Ennis also had a Bobby Orr crease dive late when he cut into the middle and was tripped up by the goalie as his attempt was stopped. Tyler Myers was calm and smooth on the right side for Canada, using a good first step to get out of traffic where he could use the boards to clear the zone or make a good first pass. That's his game. At 6'7, he seals lanes, blocks shots, and breaks plays up with his long reach - I counted at least three (one up high and two down low). His best play of the evening was a 2-1 break-up when, angling his way from right to left, he dropped to his belly and swiped the puck away from the RW who was about to saucer one over. One Czech that I watched closely throughout was 2009 draft eligible Tomas Vincour. I've seen the 6'2, 210-pound right wing play with little high-end talent around him this season for the Edmonton of the WHL, so the more mature tourney competition should offer a better gauge of his impact. Entering the tourney, he is 13-15-28 in 35 games for the Oil Kings and has been a dominant figure at times. He missed a few games prior to leaving for Ottawa after getting jammed from behind in a game on December 6th. A fluid mover for a big guy (lots of arm in his stride), the WHLer naturally was not the least bit shy about using his frame to his advantage as he got pucks deep. He finishes his checks with authority (at least three good bumps), and while not being the most dazzling puck handler, has very good hands around the net and a gets nice velocity on his slapper. Much like Luke Adam (they do resemble each other on the ice), he has the frame and bullish mentality to get where he needs to go down low, with and without the puck, with his stick on the ice. From the outside, he can carry the puck into the zone, and excel along the boards where he can lean on defenders. He loves contact. He could wear guys down on the cycle, but has a skill game that pays off in open space. He's not a PK guy, but he has the size and skill set to complement a small, speedy forward crop. It'll be nice to see him progress as he gains more chemistry with his linemates as the tourney wears on.
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