On Thursday evening, it is dangerous for Nadi: against the United States, there is a lot to be said for the victory in the quarter-finals for the Swiss.
Unlike most previous years, this year Switzerland were not a contender, but the favorite in the World Cup quarter-finals. After what was shown in the preliminary round, it must be said clearly: The failure of the Natty to take on these Americans would be a huge setback. This alone shows just how much the Swiss are demanding – and that applies equally to the fans, the players and the entire staff.
Switzerland – USA live on SRF
You can follow the quarter-final between Switzerland and the United States on Thursday from 7 pm live on SRF zwei and in the live broadcast in the Sports app. The game starts at 7:20 PM and will also be broadcast live on SRF Radio 3.
But if the national team reaches its level from the group stage again Thursday night in Helsinki, there are many reasons for optimism. We chose 4 of them.
1. Greater experience
As is usual in the world championships, there are many young talents in Team USA who still have to prove themselves abroad. Overall, American players currently attend only 137 World Cup matches.
With the Swiss, things are completely different. Only 5 of the 25 players in the Swiss national team (Tristan Cherui left due to injury) make their first World Championship match in Finland. All in all, under coach Patrick Fischer he has the experience of a full 554 World Cup matches. Andres Ambol alone scored 122 matches in the World Cup.
It should also be noted that the importance of the Ice Hockey World Championships in Switzerland is much greater than in the United States, where the focus is clearly on the playoffs in the National Hockey League. When it comes to who wants to earn more, Switzerland should also have advantages.
2. Special teams
As always in knockout matches, special teams can tip the scales. Switzerland has proven to be much stronger than the United States during the tournament so far. With 8 goals from 22 extra positions (36.36%), the national team has the best strength game for all 16 World Cup participants. On the other hand, with the Americans, the majority game has not worked optimally so far. Only the excluded French (12.5%) and Great Britain (11.11%) had a lower success rate than the United States (19.23%).
North Americans are way better off when it comes to boxing. The USA, which is inferior in numerical terms, has conceded only 4 goals in the previous seven matches and has a good penalty rate of 85.19%. So it will not be easy for Switzerland to succeed in the power game. But the same applies to Americans, because native speakers have a better reduction ratio (92.31%).
3. Shared responsibility
During the tournament so far, Fisher has always relied on at least 7 defenders, thus spreading the responsibility on different shoulders. No Swiss player has been on the ice for more than 25 minutes in a match. It’s different for Americans.
Chicago Blackhawks teammate Philip Kurashev has used Seth Jones in two games of over 30 minutes. The defender had 34:37 minutes of ice time in the 3-2 USA game after the game against Sweden. Nate Schmidt, the defender with the second most ice time in that match, had 8 minutes less. USA coach David Quinn has played with only 5 defenders in the last 3 group matches.
4. The “home advantage”
Nor should we underestimate the fact that Switzerland did not have to spend a Wednesday traveling without games. Thanks to an impeccable preliminary round with 7 wins from 7 matches and first place in the group, Nati can also go to the quarter-finals in Helsinki. The United States had to move from Tampere to the Finnish capital where they finished fourth in their group in the preliminary round. It also means: new cabin, new ice, new atmosphere.
“Internet nerd. Avid student. Zombie guru. Tv enthusiast. Coffee advocate. Social media expert. Music geek. Professional food maven. Thinker. Troublemaker.”