It's draft day today and I'll get a quick recap of the last couple of nights of scratches, hoping to add a little bit of clarity to who may or may not be getting some full-time ice during the tournament, starting next Saturday.
On Friday night in Columbus, the Canadians and Americans went toe-to-toe to open their exhibition schedule and it was the Americans that came out and dominated this one.
For the Canadians, it was the injury replacements that were scratched out of the lineup, as Corey Perry and Jay Bouwmeester were up in the press box for the first game, while Corey Crawford was the third goalie on the list. On the American side, James Van Reimsdyk and Erik Johnson were the scratches and Cory Schneider was the third goalie for them.
The Russians and the Czechs opened up the Saturday scheduled in the morning out here in the West and it certainly was Semyon Varlamov against Michal Neuvirth in nets for the respective teams and the Czechs were victorious in the shootout to draw a win in the opening two games of their pre-tournament schedule.
Pavel Datsyuk and Andrei Markov were scratches for the Russians in this one, while the game one starter, Sergei Bobrovsky got the night off as well. On the Czech side, the injured Vladimir Sobotka and Roman Cervenka hadn't arrived with the team quite yet, so he was also a scratch, while Ondrej Pavelec was the third goalie again, likely making him the odd-man out going forward.
Sobotka was injured in the first game and he's now day-to-day, questionable for the tournament's opening, while Cervenka should be with the Czech team on their way to North America this week.
The Swedes didn't take too kindly to their overtime loss in the first game against Finland, so they gave them a good walloping in their second game on Saturday. It was the expected goalie match-up in Tuukka Rask against Henrik Lundqvist and it was a total team effort for the home side in Gothenburg.
The Finns went with the same lineup in their win, which meant that Sebastian Aho, Sami Lepisto and Mikko Koskinen were all scratched for a second straight game and this could be the direction that they go with for the whole tourney, barring injury, of course. For the Swedes, the injured Marcus Kruger was a scratch, while Rickard Rakell was also a scratch due to illness and Jhonas Enroth, who saw some time in game one, was the third goalie.
There was no immediate update on Kruger's status, while Rakell should be okay to start the tournament, recovering from a bug.
Finally, it was the return match-up between the Americans and Canadians, this time in Ottawa, and the Canadians, on the backs of their goalie split, Braden Holtby and Corey Crawford, got the best of their rivals at home. Cory Schneider got the start for Team USA, but gave way to Ben Bishop to start the 3rd period.
For the Americans, David Backes and Matt Niskanen were the healthy scratches for game two, while it looks like it was a rest day for Sidney Crosby and Jake Muzzin, as they came out of the lineup for the return game and the two scratches in Game One went in. Haven't seen anything to be concerned about with these four scratches, so we'll see how that plays out for them during the week.