Buzzing The Net's Three Stars from Game 4 of the Subway Super Series in which Team OHL beat Team Russia 2-1 to tie the series 6-6 with two games remaining:
No. 1 star: Ryan Strome, Team OHL
Strome (1G-1A, +2) factored into both Team OHL goals, snapping in a Matt Puempel feed from the right-wing faceoff circle for the only scoring of the opening frame and drawing the second assist on Frank Corrado's eventual game-winner. The Strome-Puempel-Garrett Meurs line was probably the best on the ice, which is impressive considering that Meurs was the last man added to Team OHL.
As a returning player, Strome will be counted on as an offensive leader for Team Canada. The New York Islanders prospect displayed his vision on his goal, first by finding Puempel (1A, +2) with a 105-foot pass to the offensive blueline. Puempel and Meurs (1A, +2) worked a give-and-go deep into the zone before Strome got open to score.
No. 2 star: Frank Corrado, Team OHLearned praise from TSN's Bob McKenzie for playing a good all-around game that included scoring the 2-0 goal for Team OHL and finishing plus-2. The Vancouver Canucks prospect and Sudbury Wolves captain is a very long shot to make Team Canada, but he and Boston Bruins first-rounder Dougie Hamilton were a very effective pairing that helped limit Russia to just 16 shots on goal. Russia's lone marker, from Nail Yakupov in his Sarnia homecoming, came with 36.1 seconds to play. Yakupov was otherwise quiet for the most part although he did make time to bid Sarnia Sting fans adieu.
Corrado has had run of success vs. Russia; he also captained the Sudbury Wolves to victory in the Junior Club World Cup in Omsk back in August.
No. 3 star: Andrei Vasilevski, Team Russia
The Tampa Bay Lightning first-rounder stopped 26-of-28 shots to give Russia a lifeline on a night when it mostly played dead. Vasilevski's netminding partner from last season's world junior, the Saskatoon Blades' Andrey Makarov, set to step in for the WHL leg of the series, so it was perhaps imperative for the 18-year-old to deliver a command performance. His breakaway save on Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Josh Leivo when the marigin was 2-0 gave Russia a chance to create a frantic final minute, as Yakupov scored and then Russia almost connected against in the dying seconds. Vasilevski also helped his team weather
Honourable mention: Tom Wilson, Team OHL
The rugged Washington Capitals first-rounder is always wont to throw his weight around in showcase events. The Plymouth Whalers forward did so last season in the CHL Top Prospects Game prior to be selected by the Capitals and replicated that against stiffer competition on Monday, rocking Yakupov, Mikhail Naumenkov and Yaroslav Kosov with stiff checks. His open-ice levelling of Yakupov broke the Russian captain's helmet, which Yakupov later gave to a fan.
"He was hittin' a lot of guys," Hamilton told Sportsnet. "They had a highlight reel on the scoreboard and it was like a minute long."
Both the 18-year-old Wilson and 19-year-old Dallas Star second-rounder Brett Ritchie should merit a consideration for Canada's final selection camp as power-forward possibilities. The 6-foot-4 Wilson also had a great backcheck in the late going to break up an odd-man rush after linemate Tyler Graovac turned the puck over at Russia's blueline.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.
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