Team USA did it. They got it done. They won the Gold Medal over Sweden on Friday. They brought the most talent to the 2023-24 World Junior Championships and they won it all.
The best team does not always win but they did this time around. The 6-2 final score accurately represents the depth that this team had.
The top line was made up of Boston College's top line which includes Will Smith (San Jose Sharks), Gabe Perreault (New York Rangers), and Ryan Leonard (Washington Capitals).
Cutter Gauthier (Philadelphia Flyers) is the second-line center at BC and also made an incredible impact on this team. He scored big goals and made incredible plays in just about every game.
Team USA was loaded with incredible talent and they won the Gold Medal
Seeing Gauthier on the same team as other guys like Gavin Brindley (Columbus Blue Jackets), Frank Nazar (Chicago Blackhawks), and Jimmy Snuggerud (St. Louis Blues) shows just how deep this squad was.
Even some of the defenders like Lane Hutson (Montreal Canadiens) and Seamus Casey (New Jersey Devils) were incredible to watch from the blue line. Defending the way that they did while contributing to the score sheet went a long way.
In goal, they turned to Trey Augustine (Detroit Red Wings) who did an incredible job. After a disappointing tournament last season, he turned it around and was incredible this year.
This team was outstanding from the goaltending out. They didn't lose a single game in the tournament as a result. It is a banner year that USA Hockey should be so proud of.
There was the sixth Gold Medal at the World Juniors in the history of USA Hockey. There was a time when they were not considered a contender. They won their first 20 years ago to the day with guys like Zach Parise and Ryan Suter leading the way. Now, they are consistent favorites.
These kids are going to move on and try to have NHL careers going forward. A few of them have yet to be drafted but most of them have their destination set. One can only hope that these players can continue their succes with whatever is next.
The NHL futures are all in the long-term for most of them. There is the second half of the junior and college season to get through in the meantime.
Continue looking out for these guys as their careers progress. There are big things ahead for all of them. Now that they have a Gold Medal on their resume, they should believe in themselves for the rest of their lives. This was an incredible bunch. For two weeks, they were the best.