Updated: Friday, January 17 at 12:20 pm ET
The men’s Olympic hockey tournament is short and demanding. Medal winners could play as many as seven games in 11 days.
The tournament begins on Wednesday, February 12th and ends with the gold medal game on Sunday, February 23rd.
Group A: Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, United States
Group B: Austria, Canada, Finland, Norway
Group C: Czech Republic, Latvia, Switzerland, Sweden
Surprisingly, 17th-ranked Slovenia and 15th-ranked Austria beat out the 10th-ranked Germans and 14th-ranked Belarus in Olympic qualification tournaments.
How the tournament works
Just as in 2010, each team will play their group opponents once. Three points for a regulation win, two points for an overtime win, one point for an overtime loss and nada for a loss in regulation. The group winners along with the second-place team with the most points will get a bye to the quarter-finals.
Everyone else has to play a qualification game. In other words, even if the prelim. round doesn’t go smoothly for Canada, they can still make it to the elimination round. If you remember, Canada finished sixth overall in 2010 and had to beat Germany to get to the quarter-finals against Russia.
Canada’s preliminary round schedule
Thursday, February 13th vs. Norway at 21:00 local time (12 pm ET / 9 am PT)
Friday, February 14th vs. Austria at 21:00 local time (12 pm ET / 9 am PT)
Sunday, February 16th vs. Finland at 21:00 local time (12 pm ET / 9 am PT)
Qualification Play-off games
Tuesday, February 18th (times throughout the day)
Friday, February 21st
(7 am ET / 4 am PT OR 12 pm ET / 9 am PT)
Bronze Medal Game
Saturday, February 22nd at 19:00 local time (10 am ET / 7 am PT)
Gold Medal Game
Sunday, February 23rd at 16:00 local time (7 am ET / 4 am PT)
Canada’s competition from top-8 nations
Plenty of grit and speed on a US team hungry to win Olympic gold
Goalies: Jimmy Howard, Ryan Miller, Jonathan Quick
Defence: John Carlson, Justin Faulk, Cam Fowler, Paul Martin, Ryan McDonagh, Brooks Orpik, Kevin Shattenkirk, Ryan Suter
Forwards: David Backes, Dustin Brown, Ryan Callahan, Patrick Kane, Ryan Kesler, Phil Kessel, T.J. Oshie, Max Pacioretty, Zach Parise, Joe Pavelski, Derek Stepan, Paul Stastny, Blake Wheeler, James van Riemsdyk
Home ice. Two words that will be huge for Ovechkin and company.
Goalies: Sergei Bobrovski, Semyon Varlamov, Alexander Yeryomenko
Defence: Anton Belov, Andrei Markov, Yevgeni Medvedev, Nikita Nikitin, Ilya Nikulin, Fyodor Tyutin, Vyacheslav Voinov, Alexei Yemelin
Forwards: Artyom Anisimov, Pavel Datsyuk, Denis Kokarev, Ilya Kovalchuk, Nikolai Kulyomin, Yevgeni Malkin, Valeri Nichushkin, Alexander Ovechkin, Andrei Popov, Alexander Radulov, Sergei Soin, Vladimir Taraseko, Alexei Tereshchenko, Viktor Tikhonov
Teemu Selänne will compete in his sixth Olympics, in front of some formidable netminders.
Goalies: Kari Lehtonen, Antti Niemi, Tuukka Rask
Defence: Lasse Kukkonen, Juuso Hietanen, Sami Lepistö, Olli Määttä, Sami Salo, Kimmo Timonen, Ossi Väänänen, Sami Vatanen
Forwards: Juhamatti Aaltonen, Aleksander Barkov, Valtteri Filppula, Mikael Granlund, Jussi Jokinen, Olli Jokinen, Mikko Koivu, Leo Komarov, Petri Kontiola, Lauri Korpikoski, Jori Lehterä, Antti Pihlström, Tuomo Ruttu, Teemu Selänne
Jaromir Jagr and yes, once Canadian Petr Nedved are the veterans leading 2014′s Czechs.
Goalies: Jakub Kovar, Ondrej Pavelec, Alexander Salak
Defence: Michael Barinka, Radko Gudas, Tomas Kaberle, Lukas Krajicek, Zbynek Michalek, Michal Rozsival, Ladislav Smid.
Forward: Roman Cervenka, Patrik Elias, Michael Frolik, Martin Hanzal, Ales Hemsky, Jaromir Jagr, David Krejci, Milan Michalek, Petr Nedved, Jiri Novotny, Ondrej Palat, Tomas Plekanec, Vladimir Sobotka, Jakub Voracek.
Eight NHL’ers including two goaltenders lead the Swiss.
Goalies: Reto Berra, Jonas Hiller, Tobias Stephan
Defence: Severin Blindenbacher, Rafael Diaz, Philippe Furrer, Roman Josi, Mathias Seger, Mark Streit, Julien Vauclair, Yannick Weber
Forwards: Andres Ambühl, Matthias Bieber, Simon Bodenmann, Damien Brunner, Luca Cunti, Ryan Gardner, Denis Hollenstein, Simon Moser, Nino Niederreiter, Martin Plüss, Kevin Romy, Reto Suri, Morris Trachsler, Roman Wick
Goalies: Peter Budaj, Jaroslav Halak, Jan Laco
Defence: Ivan Baranka, Dominik Granak, Zdeno Chara, Martin Marincin, Andrej Meszaros, Andrej Sekera, Michal Sersen, Lubomir Visnovsky
Forwards: Milan Bartovic, Marian Gaborik, Michal Handzus, Marcel Hossa, Marian Hossa, Tomas Jurco, Tomas Kopecky, Tomas Marcinko, Michel Miklik, Peter Ölvecky, Richard Panik, Tomas Surovy, Tomas Tatar, Tomas Zaborsky
Great defence on Team Sweden backs up a strong offensive attack.
Goalies: Jhonas Enroth, Jonas Gustavsson, Henrik Lundqvist
Defence: Alexander Edler, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Jonathan Ericsson, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Erik Karlsson, Niklas Kronwall, Johnny Oduya, Henrik Tallinder
Forwards: Daniel Alfredsson, Nicklas Bäckström, Patrik Berglund, Jimmi Ericsson, Loui Eriksson, Johan Franzén, Carl Hagelin, Marcus Krüger, Gabriel Landeskog, Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin, Jakob Silfverberg, Alexander Steen, Henrik Zetterberg