Team Russia took to the ice Thursday in their first pretournament game as they hosted the Czech Republic. Though Russia managed the 4-3 win after a late comeback bid by the Czechs, it was a rather quiet game from the team's three Caps.
Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov managed only one point combined on the day, an assist by Orlov in the second period. All three players also took a minor penalty. Ovechkin had one shot on goal.
Orlov looks to have picked up where he left off last season and looked dangerous offensively when he joined the rush. Defensively, however, he looked shaky.
The Czech Republic is thought to be one of the weaker teams in the World Cup, so a one-goal win in St. Petersburg is not the way Russia likely wanted to start, even if it is only a pre-tournament game. The two teams will meet again on Saturday in Prague.
Nicklas Backstrom also played Thursday as Sweden fell to Finland 3-2 in overtime. He was quiet as well with no points, no shots and 16:58 of ice time.
Sweden and Finland will play on Saturday in Gothenburg, Sweden.