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12-10-2012, 03:57 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Originally Posted by
By the way, I'm not sure how the playoff round has changed things over the old round robin format in regards to the scoring records. You play a roughly equivalent group of teams caliber wise, though possibly in one less game thanks to the first place bye. I think other factors probably have more of an effect including the fact that hockey just isn't as high scoring as it used to be.
You are right. There are more factors. Czechoslovakia was a very good hockey nation, but they were together, so that meant one more spot for a very weak team. Systems play wasn't as prevalent back then. Teams didn't trap like crazy. While there were only 8 teams, the gap between the top 4 and bottom 4 was much bigger.
The bye is also a factor. I'm glad it is going away. Both to have the scoring race even in number of games played, but more so in that the top two teams don't have the huge advantage of an extra day of rest. Playing back to back games of a QF and SF makes it too difficult for the lower seeded team.
You are right that it is still 7 games, but it isn't an even distribution of opponents. Lets say hypothetically one year the standings end up Finland, Russia, Canada, Switzerland, Slovakia, USA, Sweden, Czech, Latvia and relegated team. Some major upsets happened and maybe it was a bad age group for a couple teams. The next year you would see Canada, Russia, USA and Sweden in the same group with a graduated team. Finland, Czech, Slovakia, Switzerland and Latvia would be together. If most of the great players that aided in those seedings are too old now, that pool might be a feeding ground for a good Finnish squad.
When I look at stats and medals in the U20, I always think of it as two separate eras. Pre 1996 and after.
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