I look back at the worst calls, player choices, and coaching decisions in the history of the World Junior Tournament. One entry for every day of the event, so check back often!
The 2014 gold medal game will eventually go down as one of the most thoroughly enjoyable deciding games in World Junior history. It featured Sweden losing the tournament to bitter rivals Finland 3-2 in overtime on home ice, and it also featured some of the most feisty play I’ve ever seen from either country at any level.
For what was going on there wasn’t really a lot called in this game, and most of what was called went against Finland. After Sweden took two of the game’s first three penalties in the first period, Finland was tagged with the final 5 penalties in a row over the 2nd and 3rd. Both of Sweden’s goals came with the man advantage, including the tying goal on a questionable holding the stick call to the Finns just a few seconds after they’d killed off the previous penalty.
However, if you want to accuse the officials of being overly favouring of the home side, you have to explain this blatant no call when Finland’s Mikko Vainonen basically begged for a suspension with a direct hit to the head on Sweden’s Sebastien Collberg in the second period.
The puck was never involved. Collberg was never eligible. This hit was never clean. Three strikes and….you’re golden.