1996 World Cup of Hockey

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1996 World Cup of Hockey
Tournament details
Host countries  CAN
 USA
 FIN
 SWE
 CZE
 GER
Dates August 26 - September 14, 1996
Teams 8
Venue(s) (in 9 host cities)
Final positions
Champions Gold medal blank.svg  United States (1st title)
Tournament statistics
Matches played 19
Goals scored 140 (7.37 per match)
Scoring leader(s) United States Brett Hull (11 pts)
MVP United States Mike Richter

The first World Cup of Hockey (WCH), or 1996 World Cup of Hockey, replaced the Canada Cup as one of the premier championships for professional ice hockey.

The first edition of the Cup featured eight teams divided into two groups. The European Group, whose games were all played in Europe, included the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, and Sweden. The North American Group played in North American cities and included Canada, Russia, Slovakia, and the United States. Some of the best players in the world were missing in the tournament, some either declined invitation, such as Dominik Hasek stating "I would love to play in (the competition), but the timing is bad",[1] or because of injuries, as Pavel Bure was injured during a Russia-USA exhibition game in Detroit.

After the teams played a three-game group stage, the top team in each group advanced to the semi-finals, while the second and third place teams played cross-over quarter-finals. The quarter-finals and semi-finals were single elimination games. The championship final was a best-of-three. All playoff games were played in North America.

In the biggest surprise of the tournament, Germany defeated Czech Republic 7-1 in the European Group, which eliminated the Czechs and sent the Germans into the quarter-finals. In the biggest game of the North American Group, USA defeated Canada 5-3 to finish first and get a bye to the semi-finals. In the semis, they defeated Russia 5-2, while Canada beat Sweden 3-2 on Theoren Fleury's goal at 19:47 of the second overtime period, ending the longest game in international hockey history.

The tournament did see some controversy after the Canada-Russia game in Vancouver was played when Sweden's coach Kent Forsberg said he believed "Canada cheated its way to victory" through help of Canadian NHL referees that saw two goals disallowed and several penalties for Russia.[2][3] The Russian's coach Boris Mikhailov echoed a similar sentiment after the game saying "It was the referees' victory", as Team Russia had felt there was "biased officiating".[3][4]

In the best-of-three final, Canada won the first game, in Philadelphia, 4-3 in overtime. Then the USA recorded a memorable pair of 5-2 victories in Montreal to win the series. In the third and decisive game, the US received spectacular goaltending from tournament MVP Mike Richter[5] and rallied from a 2-1 deficit in the third period by scoring four goals in the final 3:18 of the game. Tony Amonte scored the game-winning goal.

Rosters[edit]

Venues[edit]

Results[edit]

Exhibition Games[edit]

  • Russia 5-4 Finland (Moscow)[6]
  • Sweden 2-3 Russia (Stockholm)[6]
  • Germany 2-4 Russia (Landshut)[7]
  • Canada 4-4 Russia (Calgary)[8]
  • United States 4-6 Russia (Detroit) [9]
  • United States 1-3 Canada (Vancouver)[10]
  • Canada 5-7 United States (San Jose)[11]
  • Slovakia 4-7 Canada (Edmonton)[12]
  • Slovakia 2-9 United States (Providence)[12]

North American pool[edit]

Team GP W T L GF GA Dif Pts
 United States 3 3 0 0 19 8 +11 6
 Canada 3 2 0 1 11 10 +1 4
 Russia 3 1 0 2 12 14 -2 2
 Slovakia 3 0 0 3 9 19 -10 0

Scores[edit]

  • August 29, Vancouver: Russia 3-5 Canada
  • August 31, Montreal: Slovakia 4-7 Russia
  • August 31, Philadelphia: Canada 3-5 United States
  • September 1, Ottawa: Canada 3-2 Slovakia
  • September 2, New York City: Russia 2-5 United States
  • September 3, New York City : United States 9-3 Slovakia

European pool[edit]

Team GP W T L GF GA Dif Pts
 Sweden 3 3 0 0 14 3 +11 6
 Finland 3 2 0 1 17 11 +6 4
 Germany 3 1 0 2 11 15 -4 2
 Czech Republic 3 0 0 3 4 17 -13 0

Scores[edit]

  • August 26, Stockholm: Germany 1-6 Sweden
  • August 27, Helsinki: Finland 7-3 Czech Republic
  • August 28, Helsinki: Germany 3-8 Finland
  • August 29, Prague: Sweden 3-0 Czech Republic
  • August 31, Garmisch: Czech Republic 1-7 Germany
  • September 1, Stockholm: Finland 2-5 Sweden

Knock-Out Bracket[edit]

  Quarterfinals     Semifinals     Finals (Best of 3)
                           
      NA3   Russia 2  
  NA3   Russia 5     NA1   United States 5    
  E2   Finland 0         NA1   United States 3,5,5
      NA2   Canada 4*,2,2
      NA2   Canada 3**    
  E3   Germany 1     E1   Sweden 2  
  NA2   Canada 4  

Quarterfinals[edit]

  • September 5, Montreal: Germany 1-4 Canada
  • September 6, Ottawa: Russia 5-0 Finland

Semifinals[edit]

  • September 7, Philadelphia: Canada 3-2 Sweden (2OT)
  • September 8, Ottawa: Russia 2-5 United States

Finals[edit]

  • September 10, Philadelphia: Canada 4-3 United States (OT)
  • September 12, Montreal: United States 5-2 Canada
  • September 14, Montreal: Canada 2-5 United States

Top scorers[edit]

Rk Player GP G A Pts PIM
1 United States Brett Hull 7 7 4 11 4
2 United States John LeClair 7 6 4 10 6
3 Sweden Mats Sundin 4 4 3 7 4
4 United States Doug Weight 7 3 4 7 12
5 Canada Wayne Gretzky 8 3 4 7 2
6 United States Brian Leetch 7 0 7 7 4
7 Canada Paul Coffey 7 0 7 7 12
8 Russia Sergei Fedorov 5 3 3 6 2
9 Russia Alexander Mogilny 5 2 4 6 0
10 United States Keith Tkachuk 7 5 1 6 44
11 Canada Theoren Fleury 8 4 2 6 8

All-star team[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "CNN/SI - Nagano Olympics - Athlete profile: Dominik Hasek - February 3, 1998". Sportsillustrated.cnn.com. 1998-02-03. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  2. ^ "Swedish Coach Accuses Canada Of Winning Unfairly". Apnewsarchive.com. 1996-08-31. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  3. ^ a b "15th Anniversary Memories: 1996 World Cup of Hockey - Philadelphia Flyers - News". Flyers.nhl.com. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  4. ^ "Cup Runneth Over For Canada Disallowed Goals Wreck Russians" NY Daily News by Frank Brown, August 30, 1996
  5. ^ Fleury, Theo; Kirstie McLellan Day (2009). Playing With Fire. HarperCollins. pp. 133–139. ISBN 978-1-55468-239-3. 
  6. ^ a b "Ľ189/14/Sports". Friends-partners.org. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  7. ^ Joe Lapointe (1996-08-18). "Superpowers Lace Up To Take On the World". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  8. ^ Joe Lapointe (1996-08-29). "Matchup of Power Players". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  9. ^ Joe Lapointe (1996-08-25). "Russians Mix and Match for World Cup". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-15. 
  10. ^ "Canada beats U.S. in World Cup of Hockey competition". Deseret News. August 21, 1996. p. D5. Retrieved June 13, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Spirited Victory for U.S. High Intensity: The Hits Just Keep on Coming in World Cup of Hockey Exhibition". San Jose Mercury News. August 22, 1996. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Team USA routs Slovakia in last tuneup for new tournament". The Washington Times. August 26, 1996. Retrieved June 13, 2014. 

See also[edit]