We notched a small profit on last night’s 1-1 evening, but it’s hard to believe we didn’t go 2-0.
We had Sweden on the puckline at -7.5 over Austria, and given how they played, it should have hit with ease. A 21-1 shot count after the first period in favor of the Swedes yielded just a 1-0 lead. The lead stood at 3-0 after two despite more than 40 shots on goal and the end result of 4-0 despite Sweden outshooting the Austrians by a 65-6 count was a frustrating result.
Also frustrating us was the lack of a ‘heads up’ that Sweden captain Philip Broberg would miss the game due to a minor injury. That announcement came about a minute before puck drop.
Of course, when you take a team to win by eight goals, you an ill afford a hot netminder at the other end of the ice, but Sebastian Wraneschitz stood on his head, making 61 saves and stealing money right out of our pocket in the process.
Next, we had Germany as moneyline underdogs over Slovakia at +115. Germany did get their No. 1 goaltender Florian Bugl back, however they didn’t get any more skaters back after it was reported that they would get at least three back in the lineup.
Despite again having just 14 skaters available, the Germans played an excellent game, as did the Slovaks with the two teams going back and forth all night and eventually going into overtime with the score tied 3-3.
At that point, a hooking penalty on Slovakia gave Germany a 4-on-3 advantage and they would capitalize with less than a minute to go in the overtime period, giving us a winner at +115.
All told, it was a small 0.15-unit profit on the night as we head towards today’s three-game schedule!
Now, we have a Switzerland vs. Canada World Junior pick from the Edmonton bubble!
Switzerland vs. Canada Betting Odds
- Switzerland +5.5 (+101)
- Canada -5.5 (-121)
- Over 7.5 (-111)
- Under 7.5 (-109)
Switzerland vs. Canada World Junior Pick Breakdown
It’s been a tough go for the Swiss so far in the 2021 World Juniors as they’ll enter tonight’s contest with Canada having dropped their first two games of the tournament, a 1-0 decision to Slovakia before a 4-1 loss to Finland.
In previous tournaments, Switzerland has been a tough out and an upset threat on a mostly consistent basis. That said, this year’s version wasn’t regarded as a similar threat entering the tournament.
This Swiss team doesn’t have a single NHL prospect on the roster and the team brings three new goaltenders into the tournament as well.
Their top forward is Simon Knak, a returnee who scored twice at least year’s tournament while tallying 34 points in 49 games with the WHL’s Portland Winterhawks. However, the team’s likeliest NHL draft pick from this roster is Lorenzo Canonica who was the star in a Swiss development camp game against Germany.
So far, the team’s lone goal of the tournament was scored on the power play by Attilio Biasca of the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads. The 17-year-old notched seven points in seven games at the World U-17 Hockey Challenge last year.
The team’s best player to this point has been netminder Thibault Fatton. The 19-year-old has posted a 2.53 GAA and .933 Sv% across the first two games of this tournament, keeping the Swiss in their first game against Slovakia, but the anemic Swiss offense was unable to provide their goaltender with any support in the shutout loss.
— Dylan Griffing (@Dylan_Griffing) December 22, 2020
Fatton will certainly need to stand tall again in this one as the Swiss offense is going to have another difficult time generating offense in their toughest matchup yet.
The host nation Canadians are looking for a happy medium in today’s matchup with Switzerland.
After a 16-2 drubbing of the undermanned Germans, Canada carried only a 1-0 lead into the third period against Slovakia on Sunday night, and managed a 3-1 win with the aid of a late empty-net goal.
The inability to score against Slovakia was certainly surprising, but not indicative of how team this Canadian offense is.
— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) December 28, 2020
Despite the loss of captain Kirby Dach in the team’s exhibition with Russia, the 13 forwards on the Team Canada roster are all first-round NHL draft picks. The loss of Dach will hurt their chances to win it all, but this Canadian offense is absolutely loaded from top to bottom as the team is likely to mix up its lines after a subpar offensive showing their last time out.
Not to be overlooked is their group on the blueline. Defenseman Bowen Byram is as NHL ready as it gets while fellow blueliner Thomas Harley got into an Edmonton bubble game with the Dallas Stars as part of their march to the Stanley Cup Final a couple months back.
Jamie Drysdale could be the top offensive blueliner on the team. The 2020 Anaheim Ducks sixth overall pick had his coming out party at last year’s tournament at just 17 years of age, notching a goal and three points while handling an increased role than what was originally expected entering the tournament.
While goaltending was Canada’s biggest question mark entering the tournament, Northeastern University’s Devon Levi has been excellent to this point in the tournament. The competition hasn’t exactly been stiff in matchups with Germany and Slovakia, but Levi has allowed just three goals across the two games, posting a 1.20 GAA and .926 Sv% in the process. The Florida Panthers prospect is the confirmed starter for tonight’s matchup with the Swiss.
Even without Dach, the Canadians are +145 favorites to win the 2021 World Juniors for a reason. Their forward group is absolutely loaded, the back end sports plenty of first-round talent combining elite offensive and defensive abilities and Levi has taken the No. 1 job in goal and ran with it.
Top to bottom, it’s still the most complete roster in the tournament.
Switzerland vs. Canada World Junior Pick
For a lacklustre Swiss roster, it could be a long night. The team has managed just one goal between two games with Slovakia and Finland, and the matchup with this Canadian defense is by far the most difficult on their schedule.
While the Swiss did return two member of their defense from last year’s team in Bastian Guggenheim and Rocco Pezzullo, it’s a group that will be overmatched by a four-line Canadian offense that is set for a major bounce back effort in this one.
I don’t think this one gets close. The Canadians would be wise to open the scoring early rather than allow that unwanted seed of doubt to be planted as it was Sunday against Slovakia. However, if they are able to score early, the floodgates will almost certainly open.
The 5.5 puckline spread isn’t insignificant, however the Switzerland offense has shown a complete inability to generate offense to this point, and it’s extremely difficult to see that changing in this one.
Add in the wake up call for the Canadians’ offense their last time out and I think they come out guns ablaze in this one and rout the Swiss by at least six goals tonight.