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B's Prospects at 2014 WJC: End of Preliminary Round

CTV News

Now that the preliminary round is over, let's take another look at how the Bruins prospects are doing at the World Junior Championship tournament.

Player Country GP G A PTS PIM +/- GWG PPG SHG SOG SH%
Matt Grzelcyk USA 4 2 4 6 0 +3 1 1 0 16 12.5%
Peter Cehlarik Slovakia 4 0 3 3 2 +4 0 0 0 9 0%
Linus Arnesson Sweden 4 0 0 0 2 -1 0 0 0 3 0%

Grzelcyk had a tremendous round with six points, which led Team USA. His 16 shots was also a team high and gives a good indication of what kind of threat he posessed in the attacking third. Overall, the United States was tied for second in goals scored with 21 and first in goals allowed with 7.

Despite these impressive numbers, the United States finished second in Group A. After a 3-2 loss to Canada, the United States will face Russia in the quarterfinals. Then, the likely semifinals opponent is Sweden, followed by a potential rematch against Canada for the Gold. Talk about a murder's row.

Next Game: January 2 - USA vs. Russia (Quarterfinals)

Slovakia advanced as Group A's fourth seed. Their lone win came against Germany and thus, they owned the first tie breaker.

As one of the better scoring teams, Slovakia's issues came down to preventing goals. Of teams that advanced, no one allowed more than the Slovaks. Their scoring, though, was pretty good at a four goal per game average.

Peter Cehlarik didn't have much luck despite putting nine shots on goal. Teammate David Griger, meanwhile, put 10 shots on net and came away with three goals.

His points came early, two in the opener against Germany and another in game two against USA, so he'll need to rediscover that touch if Slovakia has any hopes of advancing. But they have a tall task awaiting them in the quarterfinals, top team Sweden.

Give Slovakia credit, though. As a regular in the relegation round, advancing to the knockout stage is a big accomplishment. Granted, they benefited from rule changes that sees four teams advance, but rules are rules.

Next Game: January 2 - Slovakia vs. Sweden (Quarterfinals)

At the end of the preliminary round, Sweden is exactly where people thought they'd be before the tournament started. First in goals, first in goals against and top of their group. Simply put this team is clicking on all cylinders and will be tough to beat.

Even after putting 22 goals home, Linus Arenesson is still without a point. It may seem frustrating for fans, but his role is not offense. With 10 players at or above a point per game, Sweden has the scoring aspect figured out.

Arnesson is there for defense, and thus far, he's done his job quite well. After giving up three against Switzerland, Sweden's given up two in two games and shut out Norway.

Next round, Sweden will face Cehlarik's fourth place Slovakia. From there, it's either Russia/USA and then potentially Canada. USA has a tough road as a two seed, but Sweden's is none easier as a one.

Next Game: January 2 - Slovakia vs. Sweden (Quarterfinals)

Those of you that hated the frequent blowouts of this tournament, get ready. Things are about to pick up in a big way.