World junior championship: Dougie Hamilton and Canada smother Russia, earn bye; WJC 3 Stars for Day 6

Neate Sager

No. 1 star: Dougie Hamilton, Canada

Hamilton was omnipresent at each end of the rink as Canada wore out Russia with a 4-1 win that gave it the bye to the semifinal on Thursday. The Boston Bruins prospect and Niagara IceDogs star and his defence partner, Scott Harrington, were not scored against for the second consecutive game, as they formed much of the labyrinth that vaunted Russia talents Nail Yakupov, Mikhail Grigorenko, and Alex Khokhlachev could not solve, as they mustered only 22 shots and just four (!) in the third period.

Offensively, Hamilton opened scoring with 5:57 left in the first period with a perfect power-play point shot over the shoulder of goalie Andrei Makarov (43 saves on 46 shots).

Overall, Team Canada might have to use its two-day break to pass around its player-of-the-game cape. Centre Boone Jenner, who received it, returned from his three-game suspension to win faceoffs, helm Canada's checking line and hold Russia to 0-for-2 on power plays. Seventeen-year-old sensation Jonathan Drouin, bumped from the second line to the first, scored Canada's lone even-strength goal in the second period on a wraparound. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins assisted on all three goals to give him a tournament-leading 11 points in the round-robin. Goalie Malcolm Subban stopped 21-of-22 shots.

No. 2 star: Dmitrij Jaskin, Czech Republic

Jaskin (3A, +3) was man of the hour and then some for the Czechs. The Group A medal-round berths were in play 1:39 into overtime of the Czech Republic-Sweden contest when the St. Louis Blues prospect used his size to protect the puck before feeding Tomas Hertl (1G, +1), who stuffed in a wraparound for the winning goal. That bit of brilliance from the Moncton Wildcats standout gave the Czechs last change for Wednesday's early quarter-final vs. Team USA.

The Russian-born Jaskin also had two second-period helpers when Michal Svihalek and Los Angeles Kings pick Tomas Hyka staked the Czechs to a 3-1 lead. Switzerland's rally, capped by Dario Simion's equalizer with 2:01 to play, ultimately put it into the medal round. The Swiss pieced together a win over Latvia and three charity points to bump out Finland, whom it lost to in a shootout.

No. 3 star: Viktor Arvidsson, Sweden

The 19-year-old left wing had the game-breaking goal that put Sweden on the path to winning Group A and Finland on the road to the relegation round. Arvidsson (2G-1A, +2), who plays for Skelleftea HC, put Sweden ahead to stay late in the second period off a setup from Anaheim Ducks prospect Rickard Rakell. Forty-four seconds later, Arvidsson fed captain Filip Forsberg for a power-play tally and a two-goal margin.

Emil Molin's goal with 1:22 left sealed the fate of Finland, which did not win a game in regulation after losing Miro Aaltonen in its opening game. Granted, allowing 10 goals (not counting an Arviddson empty-netter today) over its past two games might have had much more to do with that than losing a key forward.

Honourable mention: John Gaudreau, United States

Gaudreau (2G-1A, +2) and the Americans found an oasis of offence in their final group game, beating Slovakia 9-3. The slick Calgary Flames prospect struck at the nine-minute mark of a wild first period to put the U.S. ahead 3-1. In the second period, the 19-year-old Boston College prospect factored into two goals 81 seconds apart that made it a blowout. McCabe first scored off a setup from captain Jake McCabe and then set up the Saginaw Spirit's Vincent Trocheck (2G-1A, +1).

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet. Please address any questions, comments or concerns to (video: TSN).