2019 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships – USA vs Slovakia Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When does USA vs Slovakia start? Friday 10th May, 2019 – 19:15 (UK)

Where is USA vs Slovakia being played? Steel Arena, Slovakia

What television channel is USA vs Slovakia on in the UK? This match will be televised live on FreeSports (Sky channel 422)

Where can I stream USA vs Slovakia in the UK? This match cannot be streamed live in the UK

Where can I get tickets for USA vs Slovakia? https://www.iihf.com/en/events/2019/wm/static/6180/tickets

THE STATISTICS

HEAD-TO-HEAD
Last meeting: USA 5-1 Slovakia

THE TEAM NEWS

USA

  • The United States enter this year’s IIHF World Championship full of confidence of making the podium once again after last year’s bronze medal but have loftier expectations for the 2019 competition.

  • There have been claims from some quarters that this is the greatest roster that the USA have ever assembled which could pile the pressure on the Americans although the elder members of the squad will look to quash that.

  • Last year’s MVP and top scorer Patrick Kane will captain a side with a good mix of experience and youth with Jack Hughes a wildcard selection with the 17-year-old expected to be the first pick in the upcoming NHL draft.

SLOVAKIA

  • Slovakia will be hoping for a solid competition as they host the 2019 IIHF World Championship with progression to the quarter-finals the main target after failing to get beyond the group stage for the last five years.

  • The Slovaks have enjoyed a strong build-up for the tournament with a big win over Great Britain in which they won 6-1 followed by a well-fought 3-2 victory over Norway in their final warm-up game.

  • Slovakia do not boast much star quality amongst their roster but with home advantage, they will be hoping to pull off a couple of shocks with Toronto Maple Leafs’ Martin Marincin likely to be a key player.

THE PREDICTION

USA head to Slovakia for the 2019 IIHF World Championship with eyes on the big prize but face a tricky test against the hosts in their opening game. They should have too much for the Slovaks but will need to be on their game and not buy into their own hype. They have a star-studded roster with plenty of talent both young and old and if they can strike the right mix, they will be real contenders in this competition with a solid win here to help settle any nerves.