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Mar 19Report: Connor McDavid to play at the World Championships
Mar 15Despite playoff exit – Erik Brännström hopes his season isn’t over
Mar 13The best team in junior hockey right now
Mar 11Expected trade gives undrafted Swedish prospect a better shot at the NHL
Mar 07Vegas’ prospect pool deepens with breakout season from Nicolas Hague

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January 02, 2018

WJC 2018 Quarterfinal Preview – here are the match-ups

Czech Republic vs. Finland

The opening game of the quarterfinal round pits together two teams both looking at an uphill battle to come out of the tournament with a medal. Czech Republic played with fire to finish second in their group, with a pair of one-goal victories over Russia and Belarus. They’ve seen five players play at a point-per-game pace, led by forwards Martin Necas (Carolina, 2017 1st round), Martin Kaut (2018 draft eligible) and defenceman Libor Hajek (Tampa Bay, 2016 2nd round), who have all picked up six points so far. Czech Republic hasn’t advanced to the semifinal stage since 2005, where they picked up a bronze medal at the tournament in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

Finland’s looking to avenge last year’s tournament performance, where they fell 2-1 to Czech Republic in the preliminary round before finishing a surprising fifth in group A. They’re led by a strong defensive group including Olli Juolevi (Vancouver, 2016 1st round) and Miro Heiskanen (Dallas, 2017 1st round), allowing just 102 shots on goal over their four games of the tournament. Jokerit forward and top U20 KHL scorer Eeli Tolvanen (Nashville, 2017 1st round) leads the team in scoring with five points, picked up by four assists and a goal.

Switzerland vs. Canada

On paper, this would have to be the most lopsided of the four quarterfinal matchups.

Last year’s silver medallists and a perennial contender, Canada’s only loss came in against the Americans on December 29th, falling in a shootout. There haven’t been any particularly dominant performances, as no player ranks in the top ten in scoring, but their deep lineup has seen 13 different players – 12 forwards and defenceman Cale Makar all score at least one goal so far in the tournament.

Switzerland’s only victory came in a 3-2 win over Belarus on the second day of the tournament.

Swiss head coach Christian Wohlwend said in a postgame press conference Sunday, “They’re faster, they’re bigger, they’re stronger, they can shoot better, they can pass better, they can do everything better,” in regards to Canada. In a pre-tournament game, Canada thumped Switzerland by an 8-1 score.

As Canada finished with both the most goals scored (21) and fewest allowed (6) in their four games, it would be the tournament’s biggest upset if the Swiss were able to pull out a victory.

Sweden vs. Slovakia

Matched up against arguably the tournament’s best team to date, Slovakia is looking to play spoiler for the second time in the tournament.

Sweden once again finished first in their group, winning all four of their games, including a 4-3 shootout win on Sunday over the Russians. Projected 2018 first overall pick Rasmus Dahlin has yet to score in the tournament, but he’s picked up six assists, and taken eighteen shots on goal while playing 30 shifts or more in each of Sweden’s four games. Forwards Lias Andersson (New York Rangers, 2017 1st round) and Elias Pettersson (Vancouver, 2017 1st round) have kickstarted the Swedish offence, picking up five and four goals respectively. Andersson remains a question mark, however, since he was hurt during the game against Russia.

Slovakia was able to squeak out a win against the Americans, but a losses to Finland and Canada pushed them to third in the group. Undrafted 19-year forward Samuel Bucek leads the team in scoring with three goals and three assists, but it’s not the deepest scoring group as just four of their forwards have been able to register a goal so far. Half of their offensive output from the tournament (ten goals) came in Sunday’s 5-1 victory over Denmark. To win, they’ll need another strong performance from undrafted goaltender Roman Durny, who leads tournament starters with a .930 save percentage in his three starts.

USA vs. Russia

Traditionally two of the tournament’s strongest teams, the day’s last quarterfinal will feature two teams that have met in the medal rounds in each of the last four tournaments. 

Despite beating the top-ranked Canadians in the World Juniors’ first ever outdoor game, a loss to Slovakia on the third day of the event forced the hosts to settle for second place in group A. Casey Mittelstadt’s (2017, Buffalo 1st round) been USA’s top scorer with nine points (four goals, five assists), while Kieffer Bellows (New York Islanders, 2016 1st round) has also hit the net four times to sit tied for second in tournament goal scoring.

While Russia was able to handle Switzerland and Belarus with ease, they suffered one-goal losses to Czech Republic and Sweden (in a shootout) in their first and last games of the tournament and finished third in group B. They’ve been led so far by Klim Kostin (St Louis, 2017 1st round) who’s picked up four goals, and Artur Kayumov (Chicago, 2016 2nd round), who’s scored three times. Meanwhile, Andrei Svechnikov, who’s ranked #2 by most major scouting services for the 2018 draft, has picked up five assists through four games. 


Adam Laskaris

19 March, 2018

Report: Connor McDavid to play at the World Championships

His Edmonton Oilers won’t reach the Stanley Cup playoffs, but that doesn’t mean Connor McDavid‘s season is over once the NHL regular season is...

15 March, 2018

Despite playoff exit – Erik Brännström hopes his season isn’t over

March 14th is no date to end your hockey season. For Vegas Golden Knights’ prospect Erik Brännström, it’s way too early. The slick defensemen experi...

13 March, 2018

The best team in junior hockey right now

The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds have lost seven games in regulation all season. Yes, you read that right. Seven losses in regulation, total. How many games they...

11 March, 2018

Expected trade gives undrafted Swedish prospect a better shot at the NHL

It was an unique situation. Sure, Victor Ejdsell had a great season, winning the  scoring title after piling up 57 points (25+32) with Bik Karlskoga. Still, the...

07 March, 2018

Vegas’ prospect pool deepens with breakout season from Nicolas Hague

Much has been said about Vegas Golden Knights? inaugural season, and deservedly so. The team everyone deemed unlikely to even make the playoffs currently leads ...

02 March, 2018

For Dominik Kahun, strong Olympic performance could present NHL opportunity

If you found yourself growing increasingly impressed by Germany while watching the Olympic Mens’ Ice Hockey tournament unfold, I got news for you: you wer...

28 February, 2018

Capitals’ goalie-of-the-future has his eyes set on the NHL

Goalies usually peak later than other players and, hence, drafting them can be a tougher task. One of the top goalies in the world, Sergei Bobrovski, was never ...

23 February, 2018

Is Filip Zadina the best forward in the 2018 NHL Draft?

You couldn?t help but notice him out there. Shift after shift, game after game. Wearing number 18 for the Czech Republic, there was never a moment where 18-year...

21 February, 2018

A beginner’s guide to prospect development in the United States

In what is now to be considered an article series, this second edition of ?Beginner?s guide? takes us to the United States where we take a look at how domestic ...

19 February, 2018

Maple Leafs’ Russian prospect looks ready for North America

When he was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs during the second day of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, Yegor Korshkov wasn?t keen on moving overseas yet: ?I wouldn?t...

15 February, 2018

Will the star-studded, new-look Frontenacs be a playoff threat?

It doesn?t take much to realize that the Kingston Frontenacs are going for it all this season.  Currently sitting fifth in the OHL in points, the team?s trade d...

15 February, 2018

Heiskanen carries burden of expectation going into Olympics, NHL career

Few prospects carry the same aura of expectation as young blueliner Miro Heiskanen. While the Dallas Stars? 3rd overall pick in the 2017 draft likely holds hims...

13 February, 2018

Erik Karlsson’s homage to Rasmus Dahlin: “He’s much better than I was at that age”

As Rasmus Dahlin prepared himself for the next big adventure in his young career, the player he has idolized and patterned some of his game after while growing ...

12 February, 2018

Has the grind gotten to Eeli Tolvanen ahead of the Olympics?

Months ago, ahead of the 2018 WJC, we published a story on who we believed would win the scoring trophy at said tournament. The candidates chosen for the piece ...

10 February, 2018

Why Vancouver Canucks fans will love Jonathan Dahén

 It was unquestionably a strange sight. As crowds were pouring out of NHK Arena, satisfied with hometown team Timrå IK’s convincing 2-0 victory over hated...

09 February, 2018

What’s going on with Dylan Strome?

In a normal draft year, Dylan Strome would have been selected first overall. But 2015 was far from a normal draft year. A generational talent named Connor McDav...

07 February, 2018

Kapanen eager to establish himself in Toronto

Kasperi Kapanen got himself open at center ice, smoothly picked up the breakout pass from Auston Matthews and quickly blazed up the left wing. With every stride...

04 February, 2018

Europe vs. North America – who’ll have the first goaltender in the 2018 draft?

Rarely do you see a goaltender get selected in the first round of the NHL draft. Well, rarely is a somewhat strong word for it, but in the context of comparing ...

03 February, 2018

The steal of the 2017 draft – Eeli Tolvanen looks NHL ready

In European hockey, a huge debate is always tied to the question whether the most promising players should move overseas or keep on developing at home. While th...

02 February, 2018

Kailer Yamamoto has hit his stride in the WHL 

Kailer Yamamoto took a wicked slash from Oskar Steen in the dying seconds of the United States? semifinal loss to Sweden at the World Juniors in Buffalo. It loo...

01 February, 2018

Not an afterthought anymore – Swedish sniper looks to give Sabres value

When he was drafted 181st overall by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2014 NHL draft, Victor Olofson was an afterthought. That’s no slight on him personally, it&...

31 January, 2018

Mathias Emilio Pettersen – Scouted for over a decade

Few hockey players can say they were a YouTube-celebrity at age six. For Norwegian center prospect Mathias Emilio Pettersen though, it?s exactly what happened. ...

30 January, 2018

Canada’s golden hero is having a season for the ages

One could argue the success of Jordan Kyrou began when he was drafted 35th overall by the St. Louis Blues in the 2016 NHL draft. Perhaps when he made the 2015-1...

30 January, 2018

Ranking: They lead the way at mid-season Calder Trophy race

The 2017 NHL draft didn?t boast a true superstar talent like the 2016 and 2015 drafts did. That?s nothing against Nico Hischier and Nolan Patrick, both of whom ...

29 January, 2018

Seven prospects to keep track of during the Olympics

We get it, you pretty much know all about Rasmus Dahlin, Miro Heiskanen and Eeli Tolvanen by now. Hence, we will not bore you with another edition of “loo...

27 January, 2018What’s the best fit for Rasmus Dahlin?
26 January, 2018Who is going to stop Russia’s All-Star studs at the Olympics?
25 January, 2018Dominik Bokk – a German that shunned the Draisaitl route
25 January, 2018Logan Stanley – An old school player in the modern era
08 January, 2018The WJC summed up in seven thoughts
08 January, 2018The future of Avalanche blueline resides in Canada
06 January, 2018Gold medal recap: Canada wins gold at WJC in Buffalo
05 January, 2018WJC Semifinals Recap – Sweden, Canada advance to gold medal game
03 January, 2018WJC Quarterfinals Recap: The Czechs upset Finland – Canada cruises to semifinals
01 January, 2018Casey Mittelstadt clear MVP through group stage; 2018 draft-eligibles shine
01 January, 2018Recap of Day 6: Sweden tops Group B, USA pulls out late win against Finland
31 December, 2017Kurashev leading second wave of talented Swiss prospects
31 December, 2017Recap of Day 5: Canada tops out in Group A – Sweden takes third straight win
29 December, 2017The call him “The Hunter” – meet the Caps’ rising prospect
29 December, 2017Recap of Day 3: Slovakia upsets United States, Finland dominates Denmark 
28 December, 2017Recap of Day 2 – Canada pushes past Slovakia to remain perfect
27 December, 2017Will Czech Republic’s Necas and Chytil continue to produce their magic?
27 December, 2017Recap of Day 1 – Czechs confirm dark horse status with win over Russia
26 December, 2017Russia looks to extend WJC streak with largely unknown squad 
26 December, 2017Rasmus Dahlin highlights Swedish squad looking to end medal drought 
26 December, 2017Talented Finnish team eager to make amends after last year’s fiasco
26 December, 2017Who belongs where? – The WJC players and the NHL teams they are drafted by
25 December, 2017Too good for the World Juniors – here are the players you’ll miss in Buffalo
25 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Zibanejad ends Sweden’s gold drought in OT
24 December, 2017United States send roster loaded with offensive talent to Buffalo
24 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Chubarov nets twice in 1999 final
23 December, 2017WJC Countdown: David Aebischer leads Switzerland to first-ever World Juniors medal 
23 December, 2017The curious case of Sean Day
22 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Peter Forsberg sets tournament record with whopping 31 points 
22 December, 2017Revolutionizing the game of hockey: who will be next?
21 December, 2017WJC Countdown: The NHL lockout allowed Canada to ice a historically-good team in 2005
21 December, 2017Back in the spotlight
21 December, 2017Russia’s Svechnikov fighting for roster spot, high draft position
20 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Kapanen’s heroics etch his name in Finnish history
20 December, 2017Predicting the top scorer for the 2018 World Junior Championships
19 December, 2017European free agents providing value for NHL clubs
19 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Kazakhstan upsets Canada in front of tiny crowd
18 December, 2017WJC Countdown: United States wins first-ever gold medal after bizarre own-goal
18 December, 2017The five WJC defenders most likely to be on an NHL roster this fall
17 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Russia snaps gold medal drought in 2011 with three ridiculous comebacks
17 December, 2017Canada leaves skill at home in favour of balanced team
17 December, 2017CHL talent has history of producing gems on American roster
16 December, 2017The matter of talent development in Sweden
16 December, 2017WJC Countdown: Tavares’ MVP showing and Eberle’s clutch goal lead Canada to fifth-straight gold
15 December, 2017Makar looking to join rare group of Canadian NCAA stars
15 December, 2017A beginner’s guide to the CHL
14 December, 2017Cool as a cucumber – Rasmus Dahlin ready to embrace the pressure of the WJC
14 December, 2017Is Canada leaving too much skill at home?
14 December, 2017Is Flyers’ prospect Hart a lock for the Canadian starter’s job?
14 December, 2017Edmonton Oilers give Kailer Yamamoto the chance to shine at the WJC
13 December, 2017The Olympic Kids – prospects that starred on the big stage
13 December, 2017Can any of the WJC underdogs break through in Buffalo?  
12 December, 2017A Russian trend – three forwards headed for the first round?
12 December, 2017Deep Russian squad looks to extend medal streak 
11 December, 2017The 2018 WJC underdog that could win it all
11 December, 2017The World Junior Championships – an audition for the Olympics
10 December, 2017Sweden’s elite talent looks to end cycle of WJC mediocrity
10 December, 2017Lukas Vejdemo – taking the patient route to the NHL
09 December, 2017Nicklas Lidström on Rasmus Dahlin: “He looks like Brian Leetch”
09 December, 2017Where are they now? – Three forgotten WJC stars
08 December, 2017Breaking down Team Canada’s roster snubs
08 December, 2017Finland on the rebound after disastrous showing at last year’s WJC 
07 December, 2017Away from the spotlight
07 December, 2017Why Adam Boqvist wasn’t picked for the Swedish WJC camp
07 December, 2017Sabres faithful may get chance to see Mittelstadt shine
06 December, 2017Aleksi Heponiemi – Poised for success
06 December, 2017The hunt for the next Erik Karlsson
06 December, 2017Americans look to finally come through on home ice 
05 December, 2017Canada no longer dominates the WJC like they used to 
05 December, 2017Redefining the modern defenseman
05 December, 2017What the Swedish WJC team should look like