As well as a more in depth look at each team participating in the tournament, this is just a brief overview of how they match up. To be honest, there isn’t a whole lot of difference between them and there isn’t data available for skating speeds, strength, experience et cetera which will all contribute to a player’s ability. Furthermore, a lot of these guys have never played alongside each other – particularly the two all-star teams.
Team Europe posts the oldest age at 29.8 – which is by no means that old by hockey standards. And the young guns of the group are North America with an average age of 21.6. Auston Matthews, the 1st overall pick of 2016, hasn’t played a single NHL game yet, so the pressures on for him to perform in this tournament.
There’s an entire stone difference between the lightweight Sweden and the heavyweight USA. USA features Johnson, Byfuglien and Bishop – really big guys. A surprise, for me at least, was Russia averaging as lighter than North America.
It appears that Europeans are smaller than their north American counterparts… must be something in the water. Canada edges just slightly over USA to win the crown of tallest team at 187cm. Team Europe features the tallest player of the tournament, Zdeno Chara, as well as the smallest, Mats Zuccarello.