So far,Canada has lead the way in Group B. Here are some thoughts on all teams in Group B of the 2016 IIHF Men’s U18 World Championship
The Canadian side is the group best equipped to play the Americans. They have it all. Most importantly, the team has gotten strong goal-tending from Evan Fitzpatrick and Stuart Skinner. Fitzpatrick had a better outing against the Czech side Saturday night than Skinner did against Denmark. Evan Fitzpatrick displayed outstanding rebound control and bailed his team out multiple times. All of Canada’s defenseman have strong shots.Forward Jordan Kyrou had an outstanding night against Denmark with four goals. Finally, Tyson Jost has looked outstanding this tournament. He has set his teammates up for multiple chances and has been one of the best players in the tournament so far.
The Finnish side just got a lot better as Jesse Puljujarvi is coming to play for them after his season in Finland ended. He is an all-around forward that will give Finland the tools they need to challenge Canada for the Group B Title and a chance to avoid a strong American side until the finals.
The Denmark side has had an unfortunate run of things in this tournament. After playing a strong Slovak side to within a goal in regulation the team lost 10-2 to Canada. Denmark showed signs of promise in that match as they capitalized on their chances in the first twenty minutes and made it a 2-2 match. After the power outage ended, Canada woke up and Denmark could not do anything to stop them.
Even in defeat yesterday, the Czech side was impressive. Ondrej Vala did a nice job establishing a constant net front presence, and the Czech defense and goaltending kept them in the match. The Czech side needs to have better starts the next two matches to secure a spot in the quarterfinals.
After avoiding an upset against Denmark the Slovak side lost in regulation to Finland. The Finnish side had a decent match. Slovakia plays a decent game and as long as they can keep things close in their last two pool play matches they should be on track for a spot in the quarterfinals. Slovak goaltender Roman Durny needs to have a strong performance the rest of the way to give his side a chance to advance past the quarters.