Welcome to our 2023 World Junior Championship predictions. We’ll take an in-depth look at each game taking place in the Canadian Maritimes. These looks will happen for each game until the gold-medal game. We’ll try to give you the information you need to get an edge. We take a look at the Group B matchup between Team Latvia and Team Slovakia. Be sure to check out the other games for today.
2023 World Junior Championship Predictions
Canada Vs Sweden
Canada and Sweden are arguably playing one of the most important games of the tournament. If Canada wins, it puts them one point ahead of Czechia and ties them with Sweden for first in Group A. If Sweden wins it, Canada falls yet again, and Sweden takes the top spot. So far in the tournament, Canada has a 2-1-0 record for 6 points, while Sweden is undefeated with 8 points.
Canada has made one of the largest rebounds of the tournament. they started with an embarrassing 5-2 loss to Czechia, dominating their competition on their way to the 3rd place spot in Group A.
One of the most outstanding players so far has to be Connor Bedard, who has shattered records by recording 14 points in three tournament games, becoming one of the top scorers ever at the World Juniors.
They also have players like Dylan Guenther, Logan Stankoven, Joshua Roy, and Shane Wright who all have 5 points so far and have each contributed to some of their dominating performances in the tournament.
Canada has also massively changed their discipline, as they are taking fewer useless penalties and have streamlined their game a ton. This is compared to when they first started the tournament, as they have moved away from the ‘hero play’ mentality they had throughout the majority of the game against Czechia.
Sweden has been an absolute powerhouse all tournament long. Starting off the tournament with an 11-0 demolition of Team Austria. Since then they have been rolling, shutting out Germany and beating the other top Group A team Czechia in overtime.
Although they don’t have a player like Bedard to light the world on fire, the majority of their forward group has multiple points, with a fair amount having over a point per game. The player with the most points on their team as of writing is Ludvig Jansson, with 5 points in 3 tournament games.
Summary and Prediction
Although Sweden has gotten off to a hot start, they have started to cool off a bit. they allowed their first two goals of the tournament against legitimate competition, and they face their second team who at least has a chance of winning it all or rather win a game for that matter. Both of the teams they have faced, Czechia and Germany, have not won a game so far and have been dominated all tournament by pretty much everybody.
Meanwhile from Canada’s perspective, they are on a roll thanks to Bedard’s historic performance, and it very well could continue with the help of guys like Guenther and Wright who may also record a multi-point night. Although people have called Canada’s goaltending weak, the biggest concern is discipline and maturity, as they let a game against the surprisingly good Czechia squad fall due to a lack of maturity and discipline. if they let this game fall out of their hands due to a couple of minor penalties, it could sewer any legitimate chance of Canada capturing gold at the tournament.
Prediction: Canada wins 3-2.