Can anyone explain the inner workings of the system that allows the two groups to be so unevenly matched. There's a lot of talk about the hidden advantages of Team Canada. Surely this has nothing to do with it, but where's the logic?
I remember a tournament not long ago when Team Canada always had American refs wihile team USA always had Canadian refs. A set-up which was very controversial at the time and which lead to an unhealthy amount of conspiratorical rhetorics from European hockey fans.
The groups are based on last years standings. Plain and simple no conspiracy.
And with the amount of turnover in this tournament, you get teams that finished good last year completely sucking this year. No conspiracy at, just the cyclical nature of a 19 year old based tournament.
I believe group A is always the 1st, 4th, 5th, and 8th ranked teams from the previous year, plus one of the teams who replaced the relegated teams, and group B is the 2nd, 3rd, 6th, and 7th placed teams plus the other team that replaced the other relegated team. The groups are determined entirely by the previous year's standings.