Hello and welcome back to the daily WJC discussion thread here at Copper & Blue. We got a busy day of hockey on tap for today and a plethora of interesting storylines to watch. The last two days proved to be disappointing for Oiler fans, due to injuries to both Holloway and Broberg, but it looks like we will get some relief today.
The first game of the day, which is currently underway as I type this, is the Czech Republic taking on the United States. The Czechs are coming off a shocking 2-0 upset over Russia on Sunday and will look to continue their winning ways against another good opponent. The Americans, who lost to the Russians in their opening game, are trying to avoid being yet another upset for the Czechs. Look out for Jan Mysak to lead a very motivated Czech Republic team. On the other end of the ice, all eyes will be on Canadiens prospect, Cole Caufield to show his worth in a critical game for the States.
The afternoon game is one that Oiler fans should be excited about. On the surface, a Canada v. Switzerland game doesn’t leave a lot to be desired, but the fact that Dylan Holloway will return to the lineup on the team’s top line changes that. Holloway will play alongside Connor McMichael and Dylan Cozens. It’s a great position for Holloway to be in as his linemates have been among the team’s most productive throughout the tournament thus far. Holloway will be the man to watch on the Canadian side while Lorenzo Canonica will be interesting to watch on a desperate Swiss team.
Our last game tonight will feature Russia taking on Austria. The Russians are coming off a humiliating shutout loss to the Czechs on Sunday and will try to take out their frustrations against the Austrians. On the other hand, Austria should be looking at the Czech’s victory as a sign that this is a beatable team. I expect both teams to be highly motivated and it could end up being a more exciting game than anticipated. the Russians do remain heavy favourites. Vasili Podkolzin is my guy to watch on Russia and the only true man to watch for the Austrians is Marco Rossi.
It’s a great day for hockey at the World Juniors and I hope everyone enjoys it!