A last-minute goal allows the Saginaw Spirit to beat the London Knights 4-3 and win the 2024 Memorial Cup

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Josh Bloom’s goal with 21.7 seconds left in the third period broke a 3-3 tie and gave the Saginaw Spirit a 4-3 win and their first Memorial Cup championship.

Jorian Donovan managed to corral a puck at the blue line and get it into the net where it bounced through all kinds of bodies towards the goal line and Bloom took one hit and knocked the puck home.

The goal came after the Knights battled back from a 3-0 deficit and powered through an excellent defensive effort by Saginaw, limiting London to one shot in the first period and five in the second period.

Saginaw, Mich. – London Knights goalie Michael Simpson embraces former teammate and Saginaw Spirit forward Owen Beck in the handshake line after the 2024 Memorial Cup championship game.

Jim Vamn Horne / 980 CFPL

The Spirit got a pair of goals from Montreal Canadiens prospect Owen Beck to start the match and took a 2–0 lead into the first intermission.

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The second of those goals came on a power play with less than a minute left, after London forward Landon Sim was assessed a five-minute major penalty and a game misconduct for elbowing after a hit on Saginaw defenseman Zayne Parekh.

The Knights killed the remaining 3:58 in the big penalty on Sim to start the second period, but the Spirit extended their lead when Joey Willis intercepted a puck at the London blue line and won a race to the net where he covered and freaked out. a backhand into the top corner to give Saginaw a three-goal lead.

Less than two minutes later, Kasper Halttunen gave the Knights their first goal when he received a pass from Easton Cowan as Cowan took a big hit to the left side of center ice. Halttunen crossed the blue line and wristed a shot past Andrew Oke as the San Jose Sharks prospect extended his scoring streak to seven straight games and picked up his fourth goal of the Memorial Cup tournament.

The Knights continued to push in the third period, closing the gap to one goal on a Sam Dickinson rush that drew the crowd from their seats. He started from behind his own goal and raced across the ice. Dickinson cut to his left and collected the puck behind the Spirit net, where he delivered a pass to the right side to Easton Cowan. Cowan fired a shot through front traffic and the score was 3-2 with 12:12 to go.

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Dickinson wasn’t done there yet. With 9:44 to go to the left, he took a pass from Max McCue and scored his second goal of the tournament to tie the game.

From then on the teams battled and with overtime looming the puck reached the goal line and Bloom played hero for the Spirit.

Dickinson finished the game with a goal and an assist.

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Cowan had a goal and two assists and Oliver Bonk had a pair of assists.

Saginaw defeated London 31-13.

Beck was named MVP of the tournament.

Dickinson, O’Reilly and Woolley went to the NHL combine

Three members of the London Knights, along with Londoner Jett Luchanko and Marek Vanacker of Delhi, Ontario, will participate in the NHL Combine in Buffalo ahead of the 2024 NHL Entry Draft. Sam Dickinson, Sam O’Reilly and Jared Woolley will be at the event following the Memorial Cup Tournament. The combination brings together 100 of the most eligible prospects and runs from now until June 8.

O’Reilly leads all rookies

Sam O’Reilly has bumped up draft projections for the 2024 NHL Entry Draft and has only given scouts reason to like him even more heading into the 2024 Memorial Cup Tournament. O’Reilly was the only rookie to score a point scoring and he added four for a goal and three assists, while also becoming a key face-off man for the London Knights. The Toronto native picked up the assist on Easton Cowan’s game-winner to send the Knights straight to the Memorial Cup final and is now looking ahead to Las Vegas and the NHL Draft set for June 28-29 at Sphere.

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