World Juniors 2016: Jan. 4 schedule, TV, game thread
Chicago Blackhawks prospects Gustav Forsling (Sweden) and Joni Tuulola (Finland) will face off for a berth in the gold-medal game.
The 2016 World Junior Championship resumes Monday with the semifinals.
Chicago Blackhawks prospects Gustav Forsling (Sweden) and Joni Tuulola (Finland) will face off in the first semifinal, while Nick Scmaltz and Team USA battle with Russia. The Hawks are guaranteed to have at least one prospect bring home a medal.
The Nordic battle will be a rematch of the 2014 gold-medal game when Finland stunned host Sweden 3-2 in overtime to win its third tournament title. This time, the Swedes hope to oust their main rival on home ice.
The matchup features two teams who have scored in bunches during the tournament. Host Finland leads the tournament with 29 goals, while the Swedes have tallied 25. Forsling has two of the 25, both coming on the man-advantage. Finland is led by Jesse Puljujarvi (15 points) and Sebastian Aho (12 points).
Scoring for the Finns will be difficult against Linus Soderstrom, who will start in net for the Swedes. Soderstrom has stopped 99 of 104 shots for a 95.2 save percentage with two shutouts in four games.
The second game also features a rematch. The Russians have defeated the Americans the past two year's in the quarterfinal round. Team USA will look to build off its 7-0 drumming of the Czech Republic in this year's tournament quarterfinal. The Russians defeated the Czechs, 3-2 in a shootout, in their tournament opener.
Russians enter the contest undefeated, winning three of five games by a single goal, including a come-from-behind win in the quarterfinal against Denmark.
Schmaltz has improved with each game during the tournament. The North Dakota sophomore is coming off his best offensive game with a goal and two assists, which earned him U.S. player of the game honors. He has two goals and three assists in the tournament.
|Finland vs. Sweden||8 a.m.||NHLN-US||Hartwall Arena|
|United States vs. Russia||Noon||NHLN-US||Hartwall Arena|
*All times are central
**Bolded teams feature Chicago prospects