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Red Wings Kubalik Dominating at Worlds

Detroit’s Kubalik nets hat-trick for Czechia

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Dominik Kubalik, Red Wings
Red Wings forward Dominik Kubalik of Czechia is leading the IIHF World Championship in scoring.

Pick a category, any statistical category at the IIHF World Championship and you won’t scroll down the list for long until you’re reaching the name of Detroit Red Wings forward Dominik Kubalik.

He’s leading the tourney in goals with six and in points with 10. Kubalik is also tied for fourth overall in assists (four) and slotted in among a group at ninth in plus/minus (+5).

Thursday, as Czechia was knocking off Slovenia 6-2, Kubalik was enjoying his most productive game of the tournament. He counted a hat-trick with a pair of power-play goals and an empty-net tally to seal the deal. Adding an assist, he enjoyed a four-point game.

“Of course, a hat-trick will please me,” Kubalik told isport.blesk.cz. “I haven’t scored many in my career. But that’s the last thing I’m interested in right now. Above all, I’m very happy for the win.”

Similar Power-Play Tallies For Kubalik

Both of his power-play goals came in similar fashion. Kubalik was firing low one timers that found a path through the pads of Slovenian goalie Luka Gracnar.

Trailing 2-0 late in the second period, Kubalik’s first power-play marker got the Czechs on the board with 1:41 left in the frame. He tied the count 3:47 into the third period on what was virtually an instant replay of his first man-advantage goal.

Kubalik, a 20-goal scorer for the Red Wings this season, sought to downplay his offensive prowess, insisting he was more lucky than good.

“One shot was on the ice between the legs, the other next to the concrete,” Kubalik said. “If they were lids like (Alxander) Ovechkin is getting there, it would be something else.

“This time, luck was enough. But I’m taking all the goals and I’m happy that the power plays are working for us. We were able to lean on them.”

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Kubalik also was admitting that the Czechs were fortunate that their slow start didn’t cost them the win.

“We didn’t do the things we should have done,” he said of the start to the game. “Our legs were aching, we couldn’t help it.

“I don’t want to say that we were lax, and we didn’t want to. But I admit that it seemed that way. Even though I think we went all out for the match, it wasn’t visible.”