Tonight, the U.S. plays Canada at the World Junior Championship — a New Year’s Eve showdown.
Who would have ever thought it would mean so little?
After a surprising loss to the Czech Republic on Friday, the U.S. is headed to the relegation round to try to play for seventh no matter what happens tonight. At best, the Americans will have their second-worst finish ever in the tournament.
The only time that Team USA finished lower than seventh was 1999, when the team took eighth in Winnipeg. That’s also the last time that the Americans were sent to the relegation round.
That’s not the only bad news. UND defenseman Derek Forbort also was boarded in the first period and left with an undisclosed injury. There haven’t been any updates on his injury from Edmonton.
After tonight, USA will join Latvia, Denmark and either Switzerland or Slovakia in relegation.