Team Canada has won the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship, defeating Czechia to win the gold medal. The game-winning goal came off the stick of Arizona Coyotes prospect Dylan Guenther in overtime, ending Czechia’s bid for their first gold since 2001.
It’s Canada’s second consecutive gold medal and their second gold medal in just five months after the delayed 2022 tournament occurred in August. It’s also the second straight tournament in which Canada won in 3-on-3 overtime, with Anaheim Ducks forward Mason McTavish scoring the winner last year.
The 2023 presumptive first-overall pick and tournament MVP, Connor Bedard, finished the tournament with an astonishing 23 points in seven games, leading all other players in the tournament by nine points. He’s now the all-time leader for Canada at the World Juniors and set a single-tournament point record for Canadian players.
It’s a tough loss to swallow for Czechia, who played their hearts out and deserved to get this far in the tournament. Getting their first medal since 2005 is still a great success, and they’ll take home the silver. Goaltender Tomas Suchanek was named to the media All-Star team after posting a .934 save percentage and playing every minute of the tournament for Czechia.
Buffalo Sabres 2022 first-round pick Jiri Kulich led the Czechs in scoring, potting seven goals in seven games and adding two assists.