Thu Dec 27 11:25am EST
Alex Galchenyuk is looking good in Uncle Sam's red, white and blue — while affirming that only an injury concern is why he'll be wearing Montreal Canadiens bleu, blanc et rouge.
There was a school of thought from last season that Galchenyuk, despite his season being scuttled by knee surgery, should go No. 1 overall in the NHL draft instead of Sarnia Sting teammate Nail Yakupov. There should be plenty of debate and rehash on Friday when they go head-to-head in the Russia-U.S. showdown at the world junior championship (9 a.m. ET/6 a.m PT, TSN). It's early yet, but the high-slot howitzer Galchenyuk scored on during Team USA's 8-0 walkover over Germany was a glimpse into why Habs fans cannot wait to see him in the NHL.
Work on that wrist shot, kids.
Galchenyuk finished with a one-goal, two-assist day in the Americans' easy win, earning player of the game honours. He was the OHL and CHL player of the week in his final games for Sarnia before leaving for Team USA, so he has momentum. Each of his helpers came in the opening shift of a period. He set up San Jose Sharks prospect Sean Kuraly just 19 seconds into the game. They were even quicker in the second period. Galchenyuk tracked German defenceman Stephan Kronthaler in his own zone before the defenceman fell down and coughed up the puck, which Galchenyuk hopped on for a centring pass that Washington Capitals sixth-rounder Riley Barber popped into the net just 14 seconds into the frame.
The U.S. shared the wealth vs. Germany with eight goal scorers. Anaheim Ducks prospect John Gibson and Calgary Flames pick Jon Gillies shared the shutout. Gibson, the Kitchener Rangers standout, made 19 saves in two periods before resting up for Russia.
(Stick tap: Habs Eye On The Prize.)
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet (video: TSN).