Photo: Team Russia forward Yevgeni Svechnikov (L), shown here competing at last year’s U18 tournament, has been the top offensive player for Russia at the 2014 U18 World Championship (courtesy of ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images)
The preliminary round of the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship is over and the playoff match-ups are set. Despite the odd surprise performances to start off the tournament, the teams have finished off group play in a manner conducive with most expectations coming in. Take a look at who’s up against whom in the playoffs and who you should expect to move on to the next round.
Photo: Kamloops Blazers defenseman and 2014 prospect Edson Harlacher spent the past three seasons in the Kloten organization before heading to North America for the 2013-14 season (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
Switzerland notched an early, surprise win at the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship but wasn't able to fully capitalize on their upset win over the USA. As a result, they will open the U18 playoff round against the defending gold medalists from Canada.
Photo: EC Bad Tolz forward and 2014 prospect Andreas Eder is ranked 105th among European skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings for the 2014 NHL Draft (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)
The 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship for Germany has so far been a disappointment. While there was little expectation that the Germans would take home a medal, that country was nevertheless hoping to make a good showing and at least take part in the playoff round.
Photo: Seattle Thunderbirds forward and 2015 prospect Matt Barzal is one of a handful of players on Team Canada’s U18 squad that are still more than a year away from potentially having their named called at the NHL Draft (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
Team Canada opened the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship with a well earned 3-1 win over Sweden. The Canadians are looking to successfully defend the gold medal that they won in Sochi last year at this tournament.
Photo: Moose Jaw Warriors forward and 2014 prospect Brayden Point, shown here playing in the 2014 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game, could be an important offensive contributor for Canada at the 2014 U18 World Championship (courtesy of Derek Leung/Getty Images)
The defending IIHF Under-18 World Championship, gold-medal-winning Team Canada has arrived in Finland ready to defend its title with a squad that’s laden with international experience and elite talent.