A date with the Slovaks has been set.
On New Years Eve, team Canada hammered the Czech Republic 7-2 at the World Junior Hockey Championship.
Discipline was the Czechs biggest issue in the loss. In the first period alone, the hosts allowed four powerplay goals. After they cut the lead down to 4-2 in the middle frame, a terrible bounce off the boards ended up in the back of the net and a failed coaches challenge led to another pp goal. Canada was just too much for the majorly depleted Czech Rep squad as Canada ran the clock out in the third.
Barrett Hayton, Dylan Cozens, Joe Veleno, Jared McIsaac, Connor McMichael, Liam Foudy and Nolan Foote all scored for Canada.
Goaltender Joel Hofer made 17 saves in the win.
The win now sets Canada up for a quarterfinal matchup against Slovakia. The Slovaks have struggled in all aspects of the tournament, with their lone win coming against Kazakhstan, who will likely be relegated.
Hofer seems to have the net to himself now so they have a number one on paper, with hopes of making a gold medal push. Offensively, the red and white have looked better of late, with that ugly game against Russia in the rear view mirror. Keeping the powerplay clicking against quality teams in meaningful games will be the real test and difference maker.
Happy New Year!
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Photo credit – World Hockey Report (Twitter)