CGD: Canada Faces Czech in Quarterfinal Matchup

After losing to the Americans on New Year’s Eve, Canada will be facing off against the Czech Republic in the quarterfinals.

Canada

Projected lines

Tyson Jost- Dylan Strome- Blake Speers 

Mathieu Joseph- Matthew Barzal- Taylor Raddysh 

Pierre Luc Dubois- Nicolas Roy- Julien Gauthier 

Dillon Dube- Anthony Cirelli- Mitchell Stephens 

                   Michael McLeod

Thomas Chabot- Kale Clague 

Jake Bean- Noah Juulsen

Jeremy Lauzon- Dante Fabbro 

Connor Ingram

Carter Hart 

Spreading things out: Canada’s lineup will look a little bit different up front. Canada will sport a first line of Jost, Strome and Speers, and a talented third line featuring Pierre Luc Dubois. The premise is to spread out the scoring and have a more balanced attack, something that Canada has lacked thus far in the tournament.  

Do or die: It’s crunch time for Team Canada. Every game matters and if Canada’s not prepared to give it their all, they’ll be sent packing and be left empty handed like last year. 

Injury News: Canada’s top-nine will get a boost with Mitchell Stephens back. After missing two games with an ankle injury, Stephens will suit up on the team’s fourth line where his offense is greatly needed. 

On the back end, Canada will have to adjust without top-pairing defender Philippe Myers. Myers, a Philadelphia Flyers prospect, has had a phenomenal tournament alongside Thomas Chabot. Kale Clague will take Myers’ spot on the top pairing, but don’t expect him to play the number of minutes Myers does on a nightly basis. One would have to think players like Jake Bean and Noah Juulsen will get a significant bump in their minutes

What does coach have to say?  “Everyone has to work as a group of five,” said Coach Ducharme, “With Myers out, that doesn’t change. As a group of five, if we’re strong, then we’re fine.”

Czech Republic

Projected lines

Michael Spacek- Daniel Kurovsky- David Kase

Filip Chalpik- Radek Koblizek- Lukas Jasek

Martin Necas- Simon Strasnsky- Adam Musil

Tomas Soustal-Filip Suchy- Kristian Reichel

Frantisek Hdrinka -Filip Hronek

Jakub Zboril- Petr Kalina 

Daniel Krezelok- Ondrej Vala

Daniel Vladar 

Jakub Skarek

Skill: The Czech have some talented pieces. Winnipeg Jets prospect Michael Spacek, who scored the game winning goal against Finland, is a dangerous player when he has the puck. Along with him, Filip Chalpik and defenceman Filip Hronek round out an intriguing list of players for the Czech. 

Lack of depth: The problem for Czech is their lack of depth up front. Their top-six has talent, but their bottom two lines can’t match up against the third and fourth lines of powerhouses like Canada and the US.

History Time 

  • The last time these two teams met was in 2014, when the Czech Republic defeated Canada 5-4 in a shootout. Prior to that game, Canada had won the last eight consecutive contests between the two teams.
  • Last time the Czech won a medal was in 2005 when they took home Bronze. The last time they won Gold was in 2001.
  • wojohowitz

    Any opinions on Jasek? For me he skates well and seems to be very busy but he doesn`t accomplish much. He has been used up and down the lineup. I expected more from his puck handling and play making – zero points. Maybe a comparable is Will Lookwood.

    • Lucky 13

      Agreed WW

      Canada was so strong on the cycle and puck possession.
      Our forwards and defence look strong, however I’m really concerned about goaltending for Canada. Both don’t look like they can steal a game so far.

      Swedes are going to be a tough team to beat.
      GCG ??

    • OKG

      Backlund had 27 NHL goals in 83 NHL games in the Calendar Year 2016, 7th best among all centres.

      If Backlund is an example of bad finish I will take it a bajillion times.