Finns liking their chances

AL STRACHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:31 AM ET

INNSBRUCK -- For Finland, a 3-3 tie against Team Canada was a notable achievement.

But on the other hand, it could have been a win.

"We got a point, but we're a little bit disappointed," conceded Finnish captain Olli Jokinen.

"We gave up a two-goal lead twice."

But like all the other higher-ranked teams, the Finns are looking at this stage of the tournament as a glorified training camp.

"It doesn't really matter if we get zero points, one point or two points," Jokinen said. "We got a point against the U.S. and a point against Canada, so that's a good sign."

In both of those games, the Finns were poised for victories, and their inability to hang on is a concern to Jokinen.

SOMETHING TO WORRY ABOUT

"Against the U.S., they tied the game in the last minute," he said. "Tonight, they scored a goal in the last minute of the second period, then we got a two-goal lead that we gave up, so that's something we have to worry about a little bit.

"Overall, I think we played solid for 50 minutes."

But then the Canadians cranked up the pressure.

As coach Marc Habscheid put it, "We wanted short shifts and a high level so we could keep our foot on the gas pedal." Jokinen noticed.

"They were forechecking really hard after we got the third one," he said. "That's how they scored both goals. They forechecked the puck and they have one guy high all the time. That's where the second and third goals started."

Tomi Kallio, who scored the Finns' third goal, was also of a divided opinion as to the merits of the game.

"We would have liked the win," he said. "But it seems we are playing better and better. We were terrible against Sweden, better against the U.S. and better (against Canada). We can't be disappointed.

"The Canadians are probably the best in the world. They don't need a lot of chances to score."


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