The Gold Medal game in men’s Olympic hockey takes place on Sunday in Pyeongchang (Saturday night in North America), with Olympic Athletes from Russia taking on Germany on NBCSN. It is not a surprise that Russia is playing in the Gold Medal game, but it is shocking that Germany is in the final. Russia was the favorite coming into the tournament, while Germany was not much more than an afterthought. The Bronze Medal game has the Czech Republic taking on Canada, also on NBCSN. Let’s look at both games and Olympic hockey picks.
At 10:10 p.m. ET, check out the coverage of the Gold Medal Game on Saturday, February 24, 2018 in Pyeongchang, South Korea on NBCSN.
We'll have Olympic hockey odds at BookMaker.eu available for the Gold and Bronze Medal games on Saturday.
Gold Medal Game – Germany vs. Russia
This is truly the David vs. Goliath matchup, as Germany was not expected to get this far. To put this in perspective, Germany has never won a gold or silver medal in men’s Olympic hockey. This is already the best finish Germany has ever had and they could shock the world with a win over the Russians. The best previous finish for Germany was in 1976 when they were known as West Germany and won the bronze. Germany surprised Switzerland and then stunned Sweden and Canada to reach the Gold Medal game.
It is not a surprise that Russia is playing for the Gold Medal. With NHL players not competing in this tournament, the Russians have most of the marquee players. Familiar names like Ilya Kovalchuk and Pavel Datysuk lead the Russia team and other talented players like Nikita Gusev and Kirill Kaprizov are also on the squad. Russia got a shutout in goal from Vasili Koshechkin, as they defeated the Czech Republic 3-0 to reach the final. You might be surprised to learn that Russia has not won the Gold Medal in Olympic hockey in more than 25 years.
Germany will try and find a way to score against Koshechkin, who has been the best goaltender in the tournament. He made 31 saves in the shutout of the Czechs. “He’s been our best player this tournament,” Russian forward Mikhail Grigorenko said to the media, “He’s just been making a lot of saves. He made some huge saves tonight, and he was good.” His goals against average is 1.08 in this tournament. Russia has won their last four games by a combined margin of 21-3. “We’ve been striving for this for years,” Russian coach Oleg Znarok said
One of these two teams is going to break a long drought, as we already mentioned that Germany has never won a gold medal in hockey, while Russia has not won the gold since 1992 in France.
Bronze Medal Game - Czech Republic vs. Canada
The game that neither team wanted to be in is likely to be dull and low scoring. It also is a quick turnaround, as it takes place early Saturday morning Eastern Time. The two teams are pretty evenly matched, but Canada will be listed as the favorite in Olympic hockey odds. Canada has actually not played up to expectations this entire tournament, as they were thought to be a serious contender for the Gold Medal, but a shocking loss to Germany has them in the Bronze Medal game. The value in this game will be on the Czechs, as they shouldn’t be quite as disappointed coming off a loss against the favored Russians.
Free Olympic Hockey Picks
I can’t see Germany pulling off another stunner to win the Gold Medal, so I will take Russia in the final. I also think there could be some value in taking the Czechs in what should be a low scoring Bronze Medal game.
Olympic Hockey Odds: Russia 4, Germany 1
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