QUEBEC – Losing to Russia left Dany Heatley in no mood to celebrate being named most valuable player at the IIHF World Hockey Championship.
“Not right now,” the Ottawa Senators winger said after Russia downed Canada 5-4 in overtime in the final on Sunday at the Pepsi Colisee.
During the game it was announced that Heatley had been voted as MVP for the tournament, which he led in scoring with 20 points, including 12 goals.
Heatley had a goal and an assist as Canada built a 4-2 lead to take into the third period, but Russia’s Ilya Kovalchuk got the tying goal and scored in overtime to give Russia its first world championship win since 1993.
“We’re very disappointed right now in our room,” Heatley added. “We had a two-goal lead going into the third period.
“I thought we played really well up to then. I thought we gave them a little too much room in the third period and they’ve got some really good shooters over there.”
It was a second world championship MVP honour for Heatley, who also got it in 2004 in the Czech Republic, when he also led the event in scoring.
His 20 points tied the team record for one tournament set in 1990 by Steve Yzerman, now general manager of Team Canada.
Earlier in the tournament, he passed Marcel Dionne as Canada’s all-time leader in international goals and passed Yzerman as all-time leader in points. He now has 31 goals and 47 points in five world championships, an Olympics, a World Cup and two world junior championships.
It has been a disappointing season for the 27-year-old Heatley, whose bid for a third straight 50-goal season was thwarted by a shoulder injury suffered Jan. 12 against Detroit, which kept him out for 11 games. Still, he put up 41 goals in 71 games this season.
Then the Senators, who reached the Stanley Cup final a year ago, were bounced in the first round of playoffs by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The six-foot-three right winger made up for it at the world championships, where he teamed up with centre Ryan Getzlaf and winger Rick Nash to form a big, dominating line for Canada. Getzlaf was second in tournament scoring with 14 points, while Nash had 13.
It was the first time the world championships have been held in Canada, but that may have worked against them. The home country has not won the event since the Soviet Union took it in Russia in 1986.
“I don’t think that had anything to do with us,” said Heatley. “We enjoyed Halifax and Quebec City.
“The fans were great in both cities. That’s the game. You give some of those guys those chances and they’re good shooters. We had a real good chance to win the game and we got a tough break at the end.”