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A report card on Canada at the 2013 world junior hockey championship

01/05/2013 12:34 EST | Updated 03/07/2013 05:12 EST
UFA, Russia - A report card on Canada's performance at the 2012 world junior hockey championship, rated on a scale of one to 10:

Overall: The firepower the NHL lockout was supposed to give this team did not fire when it counted most.

Score: 5 out of 10.

Goaltending — Canada has pulled too many goaltenders in important games in recent years, but the defence was porous in front of Malcolm Subban on three of the four goals the U.S. scored on him before he was pulled in the semifinal. The Belleville Bulls goalie helped Canada get back into the bronze-medal game after Jordan Binnington gave up three goals on fives shots versus Russia. Subban was stellar in pool games versus the U.S. and Russia. Canada had bigger problems here than goaltending.

Score: 7 out of 10.

Defence — The shoulder injury to Ryan Murray, the No. 2 pick in this year's NHL draft and a returning player from 2012, hurt the blue-line. The U.S. defence was faster and produced more offence from their back end. Canada's team defence tied for the fewest goals-against in their pool and then allowed 11 in two games.

Score: 6 out of 10.

Forwards — This team was supposed to have speed and scoring depth throughout its four lines because of the NHL lockout. It looked promising with a tournament-leading 21 goals after the preliminary round, but Canada scored just two even-strength goals in their final two games. The U.S. forwards made Canada's look like they were standing still. Canada chipped and chased a lot more than they passed and cycled the puck. Nugent-Hopkins delivered as promised with a tournament-leading 15 points.

Score: 5 out of 10.

Coaching — Steve Spott had Canada on track for their first four games of the tournament. His team's failure to launch in the semifinal and his decision to start Jordan Binnington in the bronze-medal game will be second-guessed. That a Canadian team bolstered by a lockout failed to win a medal of any colour will be a black mark on his international coaching career.

Score: 5 out of 10.

Total: 23 out of 40.

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