Facing Off Podcast: Shootout Spoils World Juniors, Silver Lining for Canada

Facing Off is a weekly column debating five of hockey’s hottest topics each and every Monday. From current events like trades and hat tricks to bigger-picture stuff like scandals and expansion — you name it, we’re debating it. Albeit, not always with a serious tone. We’re keeping this column light, so keep that in mind when reading, and feel free to join in on the fun by leaving a comment. Follow us on Twitter (@FacingOff_THW) and get in on the debate there too.


Troy Terry should be extremely proud of himself. His shootout performances were the stuff of legend.

The International Ice Hockey Federation powers that be should be extremely ashamed of themselves. Deciding championship games in a skills competition, with gold medals at stake, is the stuff of stupidity.

There, now that I got that off my chest, the results are in from our world junior predictions column and I’m feeling a bit of shame myself.

None of the seven writers who participated — and we’re talking seven of THW’s finest — should be overly proud of themselves.

Nobody nailed the medals, though Andrew Forbes and yours truly came awfully close. We got the first two right — yes, we took the United States over Canada in the gold-medal game from the outset of the tournament (and promptly turned in our Canadian passports) — but we both had Sweden beating Russia for bronze.

We were that close, with Russia defeating Sweden in overtime of the bronze-medal game.

How does that saying go again, “close only counts in horseshoes and shootouts?” Something like that.

Nevertheless, Terry’s heroics crowned us co-champs of the Facing Off predictions pool, which utilized the following 15-point system:

Gold = 3 points

Silver = 2 points

Bronze = 1 point

MVP = 3 points

Top Scorer = 2 points

Top Defenceman = 2 points

Top Goaltender = 2 points

Andrew and I shared the title with a measly five points, both getting blanked across the board on the awards.

Rest assured, there was no gloating from us in the aftermath, more so mourning over Canada’s heartbreaking defeat.

We did pour our hearts into Episode 7 of the Facing Off Podcast on Friday, debating everything from shootouts to standouts. We tried not to pout too much and were sure to give credit where credit was due. For those following the tournament, closely or casually, hopefully you’ll find it a quality listen.


As for the rest of the results from that predictions pool, Zachary DeVine was the runner-up with four points, for predicting Canada’s silver — he had Sweden winning gold — and for taking Felix Sandstrom as his top goaltender. Zachary must have rigged that somehow, with Sandstrom still winning the award despite not winning a medal.

Dustin Nelson rounded out the top four with two token points for getting the top scorer right in Alex Nylander. Well, technically, Kirill Kaprizov will go down as the official top scorer, finishing tied with Nylander for the points lead with 12 but netting nine goals to Nylander’s five.

I’m feeling generous today, so I’ll give Dustin those freebies, but unfortunately I can’t do the same for Jeff Langridge, Marcy Di Michele or Joseph Aleong.

They all offered plenty of insight in terms of players to watch, sleeper prospects and roster snubs, but they came away empty-handed from the actual predictions. Better luck next year!


For the record, these were the final standings from our predictions pool:

Larry = 5 (gold, silver)

Andrew = 5 (gold, silver)

Zachary = 4 (silver, top goaltender)

Dustin = 2 (top scorer, Nylander)

Jeff = 0

Marcy = 0

Joseph = 0

And, for those interested, here’s a recap of our predictions:


Canada — 3 (Jeff, Marcy, Joseph)

United States — 2 (Larry, Andrew)

Sweden 2 (Dustin, Zachary)



Canada — 3 (Larry, Andrew, Zachary)

Sweden — 3 (Jeff, Marcy, Joseph)

United States — 1 (Dustin)



United States — 4 (Jeff, Marcy, Joseph, Zachary)

Sweden — 2 (Larry, Andrew)

Canada — 1 (Dustin)



Tyson Jost — 2 (Marcy, Zachary)

Jack Roslovic — 1 (Larry)

Dylan Strome — 1 (Jeff)

Clayton Keller — 1 (Andrew)

Alex Nylander — 1 (Dustin)


Top Scorer

Clayton Keller — 5 (Larry, Marcy, Andrew, Joseph, Zachary)

Dylan Strome — 1 (Jeff)

Alex Nylander — 1 (Dustin)

CORRECT ANSWER: Kirill Kaprizov/Alex Nylander

Top Defenceman

Olli Juolevi — 4 (Jeff, Marcy, Andrew, Dustin)

Mikhail Sergachev — 3 (Larry, Joseph, Zachary)


Top Goaltender

Carter Hart — 5 (Larry, Jeff, Marcy, Andrew, Dustin)

Felix Sandstrom — 1 (Zachary)

CORRECT ANSWER: Felix Sandstrom

All in all, a fun exercise and one that provided more fodder for the podcast.

We spent the majority of the show talking world juniors, but we did get into some NHL topics towards the end — such as the Toronto Maple Leafs’ playoff chances, the Columbus Blue Jackets’ winning streak and the Colorado Avalanche’s ongoing struggles. Enjoy!

Who won this round of Facing Off? Feel free to weigh-in with your opinions in the comments below. We will be checking in periodically to both defend and expand on our initial answers. If you want us to face-off over a topic, we’re open to suggestions as well.