Group play in the men’s hockey tournament in the Winter Olympics concluded earlier today when Canada defeated Finland in overtime.
Group Play Concludes: A fellow defenseman stole the spotlight from Predators blueliner Shea Weber as Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty tallied both goals for Canada in their 2-1 win over Finland.
The victory in extra time clinches the third seed for Canada with Sweden’s nine points in three games placing them in the No. 1 position.
The United States wins a tie breaker with Canada (based on goal differential) to sit in the No. 2 spot, and Finland rounds out the top teams in the fourth slot. These top four teams will not play in the “qualification playoffs” but instead will play their first (single-elimination) game in the quarterfinals.
Here’s a visual look at the bracket:
What this means for Predators fans:
Predators defenseman Roman Josi, forward Simon Moser and the rest of Team Switzerland slide in as the sixth seed and must participate in the qualification playoffs in order to try and reach the quarterfinals.
Unlike the NHL playoffs, the teams will not re-seed after each round (meaning the predetermined paths will stay the same, regardless of outcomes or upsets).
Switzerland (the No. 1 defensive team in the Olympics with only one goal allowed) will take on Latvia with a chance to play Weber and Team Canada in the quarterfinals on the line.
A victory by the Swiss would setup a battle on Wednesday with Team Canada, in which all three of the Predators represented in this Winter Olympics would take part.
Looking another step forward, the bracket also sets up for a potential rematch of the 2010 gold medal game between Canada and the United States in the semifinals.
Not only a classic North American battle, but another faceoff between Weber and former Predators defenseman Ryan Suter.