Despite outshooting HC Geneve-Servette 55-24, Team Canada dropped their semifinal Spengler Cup match 6-5 Monday, ending their bid to repeat as tourney champions.
Comox’s Brett McLean saw plenty of ice time and drew positive comments from on-air announcers and finished with two assists in four games. Canada trailed 6-3 midway through the third but made things interesting with a pair of late goals. Geneve-Servette defeated CSKA Moscow 5-3 Tuesday to take the championship.
Canada opened play Dec. 26 with a 5-4 victory over HC Vitkovice Steel of the Czech Republic. After losing 3-2 to host HC Davos on Dec. 28, they knocked off Rochester Americans 6-3 on Dec. 29 in the quarter-finals.
McLean is one of seven returning players from last year on the 24-man Canadian roster. The six-team tourney got underway Dec. 26 and wrapped up Dec. 31 at Davos, Switzerland.
Canada won last year with the help of several NHL players, who were available due to the lockout. They pounded host HC Davos 7-2 in the final to win the world’s oldest international pro hockey tournament (first held in 1923) for a 12th time.
Canada won the first time it entered the Spengler Cup in 1984 and had a stretch of four wins in a row from 1995 to 1998. The win last year ended a four-year drought, although they had been in the final in 10 of the last 12 years.
The 35-year-old McLean is leading HC Lugano in scoring (32 points) and goals (15) through 35 games in the Swiss National League-A this season.
Selected 242nd overall by the Dallas Stars in the 1997 NHL Draft, McLean’s stops in The Show include Chicago Blackhawks, Colorado Avalanche and Florida Panthers. He has also played overseas with Malmo IF and SC Bern and represented Canada at the 1998 World Junior Championships.