Montreal Canadiens: Watch Joel Armia Score Goal of the Tournament at World Championships

Apr 13, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Montreal Canadiens right wing Joel Armia. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 13, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Montreal Canadiens right wing Joel Armia. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports /

Montreal Canadiens winger Joel Armia didn’t have his best NHL season in 2021-22. Of course, not many players on the Canadiens had a career year this season.

The veteran right winger had a strong postseason for the Habs last spring/summer, playing a physical, cycling and forechecking role on a big fourth line with fellow veterans Corey Perry and Eric Staal.

The trio were able to get pucks in deep and wear out the opposition over the course of a series by grinding away in the corners and in front of the net. Armia also used his terrific defensive abilities to kill penalties and often create scoring chances while the Canadiens had a player in the box.

But, even while playing great hockey in that role, Armia didn’t pile up points. He would score five goals and eight points in 21 playoff games, chipping in here and there from a depth role. He set career highs in goals and points in the shortened 2019-20 “original Covid season.”

The year, the Finnish forward scored 16 goals and 30 points in 58 games. He wasn’t able to build on it, and after a seven goal and 14 point 2020-21 season, it appeared he may be headed to the free agent market. But his strong playoffs gave general manager Marc Bergevin second thoughts and he extended Armia’s contract by four years with an annual cap hit of $3.4 million.

The 28 year old went on to have a bad 2021-22 campaign. He would score six goals and 14 points in 60 games. It wasn’t what was expected when he signed that contract extension for this season and the next three years as well.

He has always shown flashes of brilliance, terrific defensive play and is a great penalty killer. But there always seems to be more he is capable of giving which can frustrate fans.

Take the beautiful end to end goal he scored today for Finland. Armia is suiting up for his country at the World Championships, where he has had a solid preliminary round. His team finished first in their pool with six wins and an overtime loss in their seven round robin contests.

Armia helped them hold off Czechia for first place with this amazing goal that would prove to be the game winning goal:

He picks up the puck in his own zone before pulling an incredible inside out deke around the Czechia defender who wipes out trying to defend the big Habs winger. Then, a split second after embarrassing the skater, Armia zips a quick wrist shot over the shoulder of a surprised goaltender.

It gave Finland a 1-0 lead over Czechia in a game they would win 3-0. Armia has three goals and five points in seven games so far as Finland head to the quarterfinals on Thursday. Finland also has a perfect penalty kill thus far in the tournament.

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