The World Championships are a true celebration for all hockey fans. Tens of thousands of people watch their national teams’ games. Almost no World Cup does without resounding victories.
Slovakia vs Denmark, 24.05.2022
Teams of Slovakia and Denmark were to find out who would make the playoffs of the tournament and try to fight for medals. Before the match, bookmakers could not pick a favorite. The Slovak national team had a hard time beating Kazakhstan 4-3 and ended up stronger than Italy, 3-1. Denmark pulled off a huge upset in their last game, beating Canada 3-2. Before the match, many experts said that the chances of victory were equal. On the Indian bookmakers’ review site, analysts’ opinions were also divided.
In the first period, Slovakia led 2-0, allowing their opponents only three shots on goal. Slovakia’s advantage was palpable. The Danes were penalized in the last minute and had to start the second period on a penalty kill. Perhaps it was this penalty that decided the outcome of the match. Early in the second period, at the end of the majority, the Slovaks took advantage and started their route. The second period resulted in a 5-0 lead, while at the end of the game the scoreboard showed 7-1.
The match was very important for both teams, but there was no fight. The Slovakian team simply outplayed their opponents, 7-1, and moved on. In the 1/8 finals, they took on the future champions Finland and lost to them with a score of 2:4. Despite this, the Slovaks managed to please their fans and prolong their celebration.
USA vs Sweden 21.05.2022
The match promised to be an easy one for the Swedish hockey players. The odds of the USA’s victory were about 4.5. The fact is that the USA does not bring the strongest squad to the World Championships. The Swedes, in their turn, are frequent participants in the semifinals and finals.
The Swedish team confirmed its status as a favorite by scoring in the third minute of the match. The Americans soon got back into the game. The period ended in a draw of 1:1. In the second period, the Swedes managed to score first, but the goal was not counted. The period was an evenly fought game. With two seconds to go, the Americans took the lead.
In the first half of the third period, the Swedish team evened the score. The main time of the match ended in a draw. Before overtime, the Swedes were not as big favorites. The overtime period was nearing its end and the teams were certainly preparing for a shootout, but with 12 seconds to go, they were not needed. Goddet was able to score another World Cup goal and secure his team victory for odds of 4.50.
Italy – Kazakhstan 29.05.2021
The team of Kazakhstan just climbed into the elite division. No one expected a spectacular performance from the Kazakhs, but they were able to surprise. The Italians had their second consecutive tournament in the elite division. Bookmakers were giving 1.15 to win Kazakhstan. Even considering the odds no one expected such an outcome of the match.
The two periods were relatively evenly fought, but Kazakhstan led 3-1. Italians were weaker on paper, but for two periods they put up some resistance. In the final stretch of the game, the Italian team broke down. Kazakhstan began to crush its opponents. 8:2 ended the 3rd period, a World Championship record for most goals in a game’s final stretch. Kazakhstani fans must have been thrilled.
The odds on 1.5 more in the period were around 1.6. And now imagine how easy the bets on the top total in this period are. An interesting fact is that the national team of Kazakhstan was able to score 22 pucks during the group stage. In the match with the Italians, they had thrown exactly half of them.
The Kazakhstani team nearly made it to the playoffs at that tournament. They were evenly matched in points with Canada, which advanced to the playoffs on individual matches and later won the tournament. The Italian team lost seven games and was relegated to the first division. For Kazakhstan, the match was the most productive on the world stage and went down in Kazakhstani hockey history.
Belarus vs Great Britain 26.05.2021
The British team is far from being the leader of world hockey. The team’s goal was to remain in the elite division of the World Championship. The team approached the upcoming game on a streak of three straight losses. In the first game of the tournament, Belarus was able to cause a sensation by beating Sweden 1-0. Bookmakers estimated the odds of Great Britain’s victory at odds of 18. Betting on the Belarusian team was accepted for 1.12.
The first period ended in favor of Great Britain with a score of 1-0. In the first half of the second period, Belarus managed to level the score. Belarus had a slight game advantage, but the British started scoring. 18 and 19 minutes into the second period, the British team scored two goals and took a 3-1 lead.
In the third period, the Belarusian team looked better again, but the British were still scoring. By the 10th minute of the final period, they were leading 4-1. Towards the end of the period, the Belarusian team finally began to turn the game advantage into scoring goals, but it was too late. The British team won 4-3 and pulled off the biggest scoop of the World Cup in terms of the odds.
Finland vs. Germany 05/21/1990
One of the biggest sensations of the 2019 World Cup occurred in the game between Finland and Germany. It was all over the news. The Germans did very well on the group stage. Finland, as usual, looked very good and claimed the gold medals of the tournament. Despite the good game of the German national team, bookmakers saw the Finns as a huge favorite. Betting on their victory in regulation time was available at odds of 1.38. Bets in Germany were accepted for 6.38.
The match started with a goal scored by the German national team. The national team of Finland was able to get back into the game in a minute. In the second period, the teams traded pucks again. Before the third period, the Finns were still the favorites. No one expected what happened in the third period.
The Finnish team, as in the first two periods, had a competitive advantage, but could not convert it into goalscoring. As for the Germans, they scored two unanswered pucks. The match ended with the victory of the German team. The Finns advanced to the playoffs in second place and could win the World Cup gold. The German national team finished their way to the 1/8 finals.
Canada – Switzerland May 19, 2018
A very interesting match took place in the semifinals of the World Cup. Team Canada met with opponents from Switzerland. Canadians do not often bring the best players to the World Championships, but for this tournament, the Canadians came very charged. Even Conor McDavid was on the Canadian team. One of the best players in the world.
Bookmakers understood how much stronger the Canadian hockey players were and estimated their victory at 1.32. Betting on the victory of Switzerland in the main time was accepted with odds of 6.12. This match is a confirmation that not always wins the more skillful team.
The Canadian team had an overwhelming advantage throughout the match. To make it clear how much weaker Switzerland was, the shot ratio after the match was 45-17 in favor of the Canadian hockey players. However, Switzerland wasn’t about to give up. It happens in hockey. Sometimes a team just can’t capitalize on its chances and the opposing goalie catches the courage.
The first period of the match ended 1-0 in favor of Switzerland. The teams traded goals in the second period. In the third period, the Swiss managed to take their only shot on goal in the 5th minute of the period and converted it. The Canadians rushed to score and fouled the goalie 18 times. They managed to get only one shot on goal, making the score 3-2 in favor of Switzerland. A sensational win for the Swiss team.
In the final, they faced the Swedes and lost 2:3 in overtime. This was Switzerland’s second-ever medal at World Championships. A great achievement for Swiss hockey.
The above matches show that even at World Championships the favorites don’t always win. Almost at every World Championship, there are upsets and wins of underdogs, and it always plays into the hands of those who prefer to take risks in sports betting.