Stone named MVP
by Andy Potts|26 MAY 2019
Canada's Mark Stone (middle) looks on after Canada's semi-final win.
photo: Andre Ringuette / HHOF-IIHF Images
Mark Stone was named tournament MVP after his string of clutch goals helped Canada to the World Championship final in Bratislava.
Stone, 27, was back for his second Worlds after collecting a gold medal in Moscow in 2016, and he produced 14 (8+6) points on his way to silver this time around. Along the way, he potted the last-gasp winner in a wild 6-5 victory over Slovakia, grabbed the overtime winner to settle the quarter-final against Switzerland and opened the scoring in the semi-final success against the Czech Republic.

The Golden Knights man was also selected in the media’s All-Star team, forming a potent forward line alongside Sweden’s William Nylander and Jakub Voracek of the Czech Republic. Nylander, who was MVP two years ago in Cologne, led the tournament scoring here with 18 (5+13) points in eight games as the Tre Kronor reached the quarter-finals. Voracek was close behind with 16 (4+12) as the Czechs came within a shoot-out of ending a medal drought that dates back to 2012.
Another Czech, defenceman Filip Hronek, also made the select roster alongside Finland’s Mikko Lehtonen. Hronek was the most productive blue liner, with 11 (3+8) points, while Lehtonen was a key figure in the Finnish team that silenced Russia’s potent offence in a 1-0 semi-final victory and battled its way to gold for the third time in its history.

Russia’s Andrei Vasilevski was the top goalie, stopping 94.58% of the shots he faced for a GAA of 1.6. Vasilevski also had two shutouts, and produced a stellar 48-save performance in the bronze-medal game against the Czechs.

The tournament directorate selected its top three players, with Vasilevski and Hronek getting the nominations for goalie and defenceman. For Vasilevski, it’s the second time in three seasons he has collected that accolade. The best forward prize went to Russia’s Nikita Kucherov, who came off a superb season in the NHL to impress here in Slovakia. He had 16 (6+10) points to help Russia to bronze and formed a dynamic partnership with Nikita Gusev, his one-time team-mate as a schoolboy.

Kaapo Kakko is now the youngest player in IIHF history to win career gold in U18, U20, and WM. He won U20 earlier this year and U18 in 2018, and today he is 18 years, 102 days old, besting Connor McDavid of Canada (19 years, 130 days)

Individual Awards selected by the Tournament Directorate:
Best Goaltender: Andrei Vasilevski (RUS)
Best Defenceman: Filip Hronek (CZE)
Best Forward: Nikita Kucherov (RUS)
Most Valuable Player selected by the media:
Mark Stone (CAN)

All-Star Team selected by the media:
GK: Andrei Vasilevski (RUS)
DE: Filip Hronek (CZE)
DE: Mikko Lehtonen (FIN)
FW: Mark Stone (CAN)
FW: William Nylander (SWE)
FW: Jakub Voracek (CZE)