2018 World Juniors Report (Day 6)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Round Robin is over after six days of the best young hockey players in the world coming together to put on a great tournament so far.

After six days everyone now knows what their future holds and the way that this round-robin ended was not as surprising as some might have wanted.

Every year the World Juniors brings the best players under 20 together and like every other international tournament there are clear divisions in talent.

It is just the way the international game is and the way it has been for a very long time as certain countries put more into development than anywhere else.

Although the hockey world is getting tighter and teams are generally getting better with more international representation in the NHL than ever before, there are still the main teams.

 

day6

These are the teams that simply overpower everyone else and leave little room to breathe for anyone.

They are teams that have developed into hockey powers whether they developed generations ago or are just coming into their own now.

In the past, this tournament was always ruled by the Canadians and the Russians who both had systems in place to not only develop NHL-calibre players but a system to develop them from a young age.

In these two countries, hockey is king and every other sport battles for second place.

They have been this way for generations and in the early years of the World Juniors, they were truly the only teams that mattered.

It was up to the rest of the teams to catch up and it took some time to get up to the level of the two powerhouses.

Although both Russia and Canada remain powers in this tournament a few more teams have grown into true hockey powers.

Sweden and Finland are in an arms race when it comes to hockey talent as the two rivals are producing some of the most promising prospects right now.

They are constantly churning out young players capable of making an impact in the NHL and it has shown in the past decade.

Both are now teams that everyone must watch when it comes to the medals even if they have struggled with consistency and drive over the last few tournaments.

The Americans are the latest team to truly become a real challenger in the tournament as their success at the top level has finally trickled into a system that produces great talent.

They are the last team in the big programs in this tournament and they are the defending champions.

This year the tournament saw all five of these teams dominate the smaller programs in the tournament and in general things ended normally.

USA, Canada and Finland took the top three spots in Group A with little issues among their teams as every game ended the way many thought.

The toughest one to predict was Canada and USA who went outdoors for their game and the Americans came out on top in a shootout.

That didn’t stop Canada from taking the top spot as it was their only loss of the tournament while the Americans surprisingly dropped a game to Slovakia that pushed them into second.

The Finns were good but not good enough to get past Canada or USA so they slot into the third spot while the Slovakians were able to avoid relegation and take the final playoff spot.

In Group B, things were a little messier after the Russians came out very sluggish to start the tournament.

hockey-sidebarThey lost their first game to the Czechs and it put them behind right away but they stayed on track from there.

The only loss they suffered was against the Swedes in the shootout to end the tournament but the loss to the Czechs had lasting effects.

Although it was expected that the Swedes and Russians would finish as the top two teams the Russians fell to third while the Czechs took the second spot.

Tournament favourite, Sweden did what everyone expected them to do and won every game to take the first place spot.

The final spot in the playoffs was grabbed by the Swiss who were just good enough to stay out of relegation.

Meanwhile, Denmark and Belarus will play in the relegation series as many expected they would.

As the tournament continues there are some games that are a little more predictable, although upsets can always happen.

When the tournament approaches the end the best teams in the world will likely see each other and that is where this tournament gets even more fun.

Best on best is in the playoffs and the playoffs are right around the corner as the best in the world is about to be crowned.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 168 other followers

%d bloggers like this: