Article Written By: Adam Wible
With pool play all finished up, it’s now time for the knockout stage.
Sweden will get the overall one seed, as they were the only team to win all three games in regulation. They are followed by team USA, Canada, and Finland, each of which have bye’s until the quarterfinals.
If there’s any hope for a Vancouver Gold Medal rematch, it won’t take place until the semifinals.
Sweden and the United States should advance into the semifinals. The Fin’s will have their hands full with Russia, and the Swiss have been my dark horse all tournament.
Solid goaltending for the Swiss has kept every game a 1-0 decision. They went 2-1 in pool play, thanks to Jonas Hiller’s shutouts.
Both of these games can go either direction, Russia will have the home ice advantage, and thus give them a spot in the semifinals. Canada-Switzerland is a tossup in my book. With that, I’ll just bet the under.
The U.S. game will take place, Feb 19. at Noon EST on MSNBC.
Sweden-Russia has the makings to be something special. The Swede’s haven’t lost, and the host country is out for blood, ever since losing to the States. I’m going to go Russia in a close one, if not overtime/shootout.
USA-Swiss, The U.S. and their juggernaut offense, plus dominant goaltending, will give the States an edge.
USA-Canada will have the most hype in North America. Most Americans are still salty at the Vancouver outcome. In a back and forth game, the roles reverse, and the USA pulls off the overtime victory.
Sweden-Canada for the bronze will have the Swede’s out of it. After a demoralizing first loss of the tournament to Russia, I give Canada the edge. That and the thought of no medal for the Canadians will light a fire for a medal.
USA-Russia for the gold medal. In an epic rematch, with Putin in the house, the U.S. do the dirty again. Another close, back and forth, and hard fought contest will have the Red, White, and Blue on top. Quick will be a difference maker between goaltenders, and honestly could see this contest going to a shootout.
Who wouldn’t want to see this again for the gold?