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Olympic Hockey Betting News and Notes Wednesday, February 19

Olympic Hockey Betting News and Notes Wednesday, February 19

Wednesday's Olympic Hockey Betting Cheat Sheet

Here's a look at Wednesday's Olympic men's hockey action:

Sweden vs. Slovenia (+1,200)

The Swedes overcame Henrik Sedin's absence and Henrik Zetterberg's mid-tournament injury departure to lock up the top seed in the tournament and a quarterfinal date with the upstart Slovenians. Sweden's defense and goaltending limited Switzerland, the Czech Republic and Latvia to five goals en route to a perfect round-robin record. The Slovenians continued their strong tournament with a 4-0 triumph over Austria in the qualification playoff, but will be hard-pressed to repeat the feat against a Swedish side that boasts some of the top talent in the world.

Finland vs. Russia (-213)

Not even a four-goal victory in the qualification playoff was enough to ease the relative anxiety of the home fans, who haven't seen their beloved team play a good game since the tournament-opening win over Slovenia. The Russians' 4-0 triumph over Norway exposed many of the team's biggest flaws - and those shortcomings could torpedo their gold-medal chances as they face a Finnish squad missing several key players but still looking dangerous. Finland earned a bye with wins over Austria and Norway and an OT loss to Canada, a game that was tightly-contested throughout.

Czech Republic vs. United States (-286)

The United States finished with the same record as rival Canada, yet face a much tougher path to a potential semifinal matchup. The Americans rolled to a 3-0-0 record with a plus-11 goal differential, but will be in tough against a Czech side that finally showed its immense potential - before almost melting down - en route to a 5-3 qualification win over Slovakia. The Americans tied Finland for the most round-robin goals with 15, and are deep at every position. The Czechs stumbled through their first four games, but could prove difficult to knock off.

Latvia vs. Canada (-5556)

Finishing third in the round-robin may have actually been a blessing for the defending  champions, who will face an unheralded Latvian side that stunned Switzerland 3-1 in the qualification playoff. A match with the Swiss likely would have been more trouble for the Canadians than a date with Latvia, which played over its head Tuesday and will struggle mightily to handle Canada's size, speed and strength in all areas of the ice. Carey Price will get the start in goal for the Canadians, and shouldn't expect to be busy.

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