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Canada vs Russia: 1st IIHF WJHC Matchup on Canadian Soil Since 2015 Finale

The gem on a complete slate of world junior hockey action on Day 1, the Russians invade Toronto to take on the hosting Canucks in a significant tone-setting matchup. Canada got a scare in its closing pre-tournament game, just barely scratching by the Swiss in a 4-3 victory. The Canadians outshot Switzerland 32-14 but ran right into a hot goaltender. They’ll need to be greater on Boxing Day if they want to acquire their tournament began in the perfect direction in the Air Canada Centre.
SHARK BITES
When hosting, canada has medaled since 2012 but has never failed to trophy.
The last time the teams met on Canadian soil, Canada beat Russia in the 2015 gold medal game.
Canada has 5.
Canada is generally dealt with an easier competition in its original WJC match but a sixth-place finish a year ago caused a Group B placing along with different heavyweights USA and Russia. Canada’s roster this year doesn’t feature the superstars it’s in years ago but it’s still incredibly well-rounded. They’re by far the deepest team in the tournament and will be anchored by facilities Dylan Strome (2015 third overall draft pick) and Mathew Barzal (2015 16th overall draft selection ).
The Russians are far more seasoned crew with a roster chock full of world junior veterans. They have medaled out six decades right but are in tough to outlast a Canadian group that’s four lines deep and that traditionally provides the Russians difficulties in this championship. This squad will most likely be in contention at the late stages but it will have a mighty effort for Russia to escape its very first match with any points.
It’s tough to locate a participant on the roster that wasn’t either drafted in the first round or that isn’t likely to go in the opening round of the upcoming NHL draft. The Canucks are the favorites to win this championship as well as the -375 favorites to win their opener from Russia.

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