The Stanley Cup playoffs were on hiatus, but fans were able to get their international hockey fix as Team Canada toppled Team Finland at the world hockey championship Friday. Meanwhile, Canadian hurdler Phylicia George swooped into the spotlight in the season-opening Diamond League competition in Doha.
Here are your top five stories from a busy Friday in the sporting world.
1. Phylicia George of Markham, Ont. raced to a third-place finish in the Diamond League event in Qatar, clocking a time of 12.79 seconds in the women's 100-metre hurdles. She wasn't the only Canadian competing, though, as Whitby, Ont. native Priscilla Lopes-Schliep placed sixth while Perdita Felicien and Nikkita Holder, both of Pickering, Ont., wound up fifth and eighth respectively.
2. Team Canada benefitted from a significant youth injection at the hockey worlds, riding the tailcoats of three 21-and-unders to a 5-3 victory over Team Finland. Evander Kane, 20, scored the game-winner in the Finns' backyard in Helsinki, while teammates John Tavares, 21, and 19-year-old Jeff Skinner each contributed a goal and assist in the victory.
3. Another big-name player was sent packing from the blue-coloured clay at the Madrid Open Friday. Just a day after clay-court king Rafael Nadal suffered an early exit, Novak Djokovic duplicated the feat in the quarter-finals and later said he wouldn't return next year if organizers don't change the surface of the court.
4. Looking ahead to Game 7 between the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals Saturday (CBC, CBCSports.ca, 7 p.m. ET), the Blueshirts will be trying to please their fans on home ice and use the atmosphere to their advantage. Meanwhile, current and former NHLers offered their thoughts on Twitter on an entertaining Rangers-Capitals series and the abundance of intriguing storylines throughout this year's Stanley Cup playoffs.
5. Another stellar season, another trophy to add to his mantlepiece. Miami Heat forward LeBron James has reportedly won the NBA's Most Valuable Player award, with a possible announcement scheduled for Saturday. It will be the third time he's taken home the individual honour in the past four seasons — Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose won it last year.
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