2023 wjc can usa 01 04

World Juniors Preview: Canada vs. United States

Wednesday, January 4 | 7:30 p.m. AT | Halifax, Nova Scotia | Semifinal

January 3, 2023


Coming off a sensational overtime victory against Slovakia, Canada’s National Junior Team looks to continue its winning ways when its faces off against the United States on Wednesday night in semifinal action at the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship.


Connor Bedard scored an unbelievable overtime winner to sink Slovakia 4-3 in what can only be described as an instant classic on Monday night in Halifax. Bedard also scored the opening goal in the first period and added an assist, breaking four Canadian records (more on that below). Dylan Guenther and Zack Ostapchuk also scored and Thomas Milic was terrific in goal, making 24 saves that included snagging a Slovak rebound attempt out of mid-air in overtime to keep Canada alive.

The United States’ last game was an 11-1 quarterfinal victory over Germany on Monday. Logan Cooley had a hat trick and an assist, Ryan Ufko had five helpers, and Cutter Gauthier and Red Savage scored twice each for the Americans, who got points from 15 different players.


The teams last met in the gold medal game of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship inside the Edmonton bubble. Spencer Knight was the story, making 34 saves for the Americans, and goals from Alex Turcotte and Trevor Zegras left the Canadians with silver after a 2-0 loss .


If it isn’t obvious by now, it should be. Connor Bedard. His performance Monday helped him break four Canadian records – most career goals at the World Juniors (16), most career points at the World Juniors (34), most points in single World Juniors (21) and most assists in a single World Juniors (13). He’s a major reason the Canadians are two wins away from a 20th gold medal. Canada has also benefited from the play of Milic, who has stopped 46 of 50 shots in his last two starts and made a couple of huge stops late in the third period and in overtime to help keep the Canadians alive.

For the Americans, Logan Cooley and Jimmy Snuggerud come into the game with 11 and 10 points, respectively, the only players other than Bedard to hit double-digits so far. Trey Augustine has been very good between the pipes as a 17-year-old; his 1.36 goals-against average leads the tournament, and his .938 save percentage is good for second.


Historically, Canada has dominated the United States at this tournament, winning 33 of 48 meetings, with three ties. In recent years, however, things have been a little more even. In the last 10 meetings, going back to 2012, Canada has a record of 4-6, with its most recent win being a 6-4 preliminary-round victory in 2020.

The last time these two teams met in the semifinals was in 2013, a 5-1 U.S. win. However, Canada does have 4-1 record over the Americans in semifinal play, which includes a 3-2 win in Halifax back in 2003 – Jeff Woywitka netted the winner with 8:20 left in that one.

All-time record: Canada leads 33-12-3 (3-3 in OT/SO)
Canada goals: 194
United States goals: 134

For more information:

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 284-6484 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 777-4567

Jeremy Knight
Manager, Corporate Communications
Hockey Canada

(647) 251-9738

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