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ALL THE WORLD'S A STAGE

Four Sabres taking part in 2013 IIHF World Championship

Friday, 05.03.2013 / 3:08 PM / News
By Kevin Snow  - Sabres.com (@kwsnow)
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ALL THE WORLD\'S A STAGE
The 2013 IIHF World Championship got underway today, and a handful of Buffalo Sabres will be extending their seasons in this two-week event that takes place in Stockholm, Sweden, and Helsinki, Finland.

The 2013 IIHF World Championship got underway today, and a handful of Buffalo Sabres will be extending their seasons in this two-week event that takes place in Stockholm, Sweden, and Helsinki, Finland.

Andrej Sekera and Slovakia were the first out of the blocks, posting a 6-2 win over France in the opening game of the 16-team tournament this morning. The Sabres blueliner picked up an assist and skated a game-high 24:54 of ice time in the victory.

Friday’s schedule also included a pair of games featuring two other Sabres. Defenseman Christian Ehrhoff is captaining the German squad, and they opened against Finland; while Jhonas Enroth and Team Sweden hosted Switzerland at the Globe Arena in Stockholm. Enroth is expected to share the Tre Kronor goaltending duties with Florida’s Jacob Markstrom.

Thomas Vanek will suit up for Austria, and his first game comes on Saturday against the United States in Helsinki. Sabres Hall of Famer Phil Housley is an assistant coach for Team USA, just months after leading the country’s Under-20 team to gold at the World Junior Championship in Russia.

Zemgus Girgensons, Buffalo’s second of two first-round picks (14th overall) in last June’s Entry Draft, tweeted earlier today that he was leaving Rochester and heading to Finland to join up with the Latvian team that is coached by former Sabres bench boss Ted Nolan. The 19-year-old Girgensons is coming off a team-leading three-goal performance in Rochester’s three playoff games against Toronto, following a rookie season that saw him collect 17 points (6+11) in 61 games with the Amerks.

CLICK HERE FOR TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE

There are several other Buffalo connections scattered throughout the tournament. Former Sabres head coach Lindy Ruff will guide a Canadian team that also includes defenseman Brian Campbell; Miro Satan joins Sekera on Slovakia; Henrik Tallinder will patrol the Swedish blueline, and Chris Butler will do the same for Team USA. Forward Jiri Novotny is not only playing for the Czech Republic, but he’s somehow been named the captain of a team that is clearly bereft of leadership.

The tournament will also give Sabres fans the chance to renew acquaintances with a trio of former draft picks that are no longer part of the organization: Philip Gogulla (Germany; 2005, 2nd rd), Felix Schutz (Germany; 2006, 4th rd) and the legendary Denis Denisov (Russia; 2000, 5th rd).

The 16 countries are divided into two eight-team pools, with each country will playing seven games in the preliminary round that runs until May 13. The top four teams in each pool advance to the sudden-death quarterfinals that take place on Thursday May 16, followed by the semis on Saturday, May 18. The gold and bronze medal games will be played on Sunday, May 19. The semifinal and medal-round games will all be played in Stockholm.

NBC Sports Network will air each Team USA game, along with full coverage of all quarterfinal, semifinal and championship games. Click here for the full breakdown of NBC’s broadcast information.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82