Perry snaps scoring drought

JIM CRESSMAN -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 11:24 AM ET

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Corey Perry had no reason to be ashamed of anything about his play for Canada after three games at the world junior hockey championship. But when you're known as a goal scorer with the London Knights and you don't have any to show on the world stage, the pressure mounts.

Perry fired a couple of exclamation marks behind his name last night with two goals against Finland in Canada's 8-1 victory.

Despite officially having three assists -- he should have been credited with two more in Canada's opening game -- he said it was "a monkey off my back" to finally score.

Perry opened the scoring at 4:45 of the first period on a power play. He was in the right spot at the right time -- standing in front of the net when a shot by defenceman Dion Phaneuf came out front off the glass.

"You know what, I had chances (to score) in the other games, but it's just one of those things -- if they don't go in they don't go in. But luckily I got a nice bounce off the glass today," said Perry, the Ontario Hockey League's scoring leader with 23 goals and 63 points in 30 games.

Perry is playing with Patrice Bergeron, on loan from the Boston Bruins organization, and 17-year-old sensation Sidney Crosby of the Rimouski Oceanic.

Crosby had six goals and Bergeron three going into yesterday's game, but both were held off the scoreboard.

That line has 11 goals and 11 assists in four games.

"Our line is doing well," Perry said. "We just wanted to make sure somebody was putting the puck in the net today. But you want to help contribute and I knew they were going to come, one game or another."

Perry said he wasn't concerned some of his assists had been missed by the officials.

"Just as long as the team is winning. It doesn't matter how many goals or how many assists you get as long as the team wins. That's all that matters," he said. "But it is nice to get that first one and hopefully they keep coming."

Perry scored his second goal with 1:15 remaining in the second period to make it 7-0.

Bergeron, skating behind the net with puck, fed Perry as he too was in behind the Finland cage. Perry then stepped out front and scored on the wraparound.

His play is catching the attention of people here, after he was cut at last year's camp, then made the team this year as the 13th forward.

Perry stepped onto his line when Jeremy Colliton of the Prince Albert Raiders went down with a knee injury during camp.

"I'm just trying to put that behind me," Perry said of last year's disappointment.

"It's one of those things you have to use as motivation. You have to show everybody you belong here and deserve to be here and that's all I'm trying to do."


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