No major surprises today as the favored teams all won in fairly convincing fashion.
The Swedes started the day out and jumped out to an early 3-0 lead on the strength of goals by Daniel Sedin, Daniel Alfredsson and Johan Franzen. The underdog Belarus team hung tough, scoring the next two goals, both off the stick of Dmitri Meleshko but Sweden held on for a 4-2 win.
In a very similiar game, the favored Czechs jumped up to a 4-0 edge on Latvia with goals from David Krejci, Tomas Plekanec, former Penguin Jaromir Jagr and Tomas Kaberle. Latvia would stick around and make it interesting by scoring two goals Sotnieks and Antipanks but the comeback bid fell too little too late to make goalie Tomas Vokoun and the Czech Republic pay. Patrik Elias scored a beauty of a long distance empty netter to seal the deal 5-2.
Finland wouldn't fall into the trap that others did, as they scored early and often in route to a 5-0 win.
The Czech Republic now find themselves in the drivers seat for their group matchup against powerhouse Russia, much like the USA does against powerhouse Canada on Sunday. Sweden is in good shape and Finland figures to be players in the medal round too. As group play is about to end there aren't many surprises, but the jockeying of positioning is still very much in play.