The 2017 World Junior Championships kicked off on Monday afternoon. According to the folks at Bovada, Canada enters the tournament as the clear favorites to win gold with the United States and Russia just behind them.
What makes the World Junior Championships such an interesting international tournament is that has been a pretty wide open event in recent years with Canada only winning gold once in the past seven years (they have just one medal of any kind in the past four years). A lot of that is due to the fact some of their best players are playing in the NHL and not always available to them, but it definitely creates a lot more intrigue going in.
Five different teams have won gold in the past seven years, with only the United States and Finland winning gold more than once during that stretch.
Here the odds for every team heading into the tournament, via Bovada.
- Canada: 4-5
- United States: 9-2
- Russia: 5-1
- Sweden: 5-1
- Finland: 11-2
- Czech Republic: 25-1
- Switzerland: 100-1
- Slovakia: 125-1
- Denmark: 200-1
- Latvia: 250-1
Canada’s roster is headlined by New York Islanders prospect Matthew Barzal, Ottawa Senators prospect Thomas Chabot, and Arizona Coyotes forward Dylan Strome (pictured above). Strome is set to captain the team.
Team USA is led by Jeremy Bracco (Toronto Maple Leafs) and Clayton Keller (Arizona Coyotes). As has been the case with recent Team USA rosters, the players that did not make the roster are making more headlines than the ones that did. This time around it is the omissions of high scoring forwards Alex Debrincat and Logan Brown that raised eyebrows.