BRATISLAVA – It would be nice to see someone challenge the single-tournament points record at the 2011 IIHF Championship (34, Vladimir Petrov, USSR, 1973). However, it’s more likely that we’ll see some not-so-glorious marks established.
Belarus starting netminder Andrei Mezin will almost certainly take sole possession of the all-time record for most career World Championship losses by a goalie before this tournament ends.
When Switzerland beat Belarus 4-1 on Sunday, the Dynamo Minsk veteran moved into a tie for the current mark (25) with two Finnish goalies, Juhani Lahtinen and Jorma Valtonen. It’s more a reflection of Mezin's playing consistently for a non-medal team than an indictment of his skills: the 36-year-old has twice cracked the tournament all-star team (2006, 2009).
After just two games with Russia, defenceman Alexei Yemelin is already almost halfway to the single-tournament record for most penalty minutes. The Ak Bars Kazan regular sits at 27 PIM, primarily due to the five-minute major and game misconduct he took for hammering Slovenia’s Ziga Yeglic into the boards from behind in a 6-4 Russian victory.
The mark of infamy currently belongs to Italy’s Mario Chittaroni, who ended up with 60 minutes in 2001. Considering that Russia has usually played nine games at the Worlds in recent years, this record category is worth watching. Also, Yemelin had 33 PIM last year.
If the Danes fall into the trap of playing the way they did against Finland again, they could set the record for fewest shots on goal by a team in one game. They only recorded nine versus Suomi.
The all-time low for shots is seven, shared by Switzerland (against Czechoslovakia on May 4, 1992) and Slovenia (against Finland on April 28, 2003).