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How to watch the Final Olympic Qualification tournaments

Ice Hockey - Winter Olympics Day 13 Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

We are just 18 games away from finding out the final three countries to compete in the 2022 Beijing Olympics as the three Final Olympic Qualification tournaments kick off today.

Three of the countries in each groups were determined by each countries IIHF World Rankings with the final country earning a spot through winning the first qualification tournaments. The winners will move on to join Japan and host China in Group B in February.

Unlike senior World Championships and the Olympics, these tournaments are just round robin. The team with the most points after their games advances.

How to watch all of the Groups

Great news! It’s super easy to watch!

If you live in a country playing, there’s a high chance its being broadcast in your country.

If you don’t, the Olympic Channel will stream all games live.

Group C

Czech Republic hosts Hungary, Poland, and Norway.

Schedule

Thursday Nov 11

Hungary v Poland at noon (6 a.m. eastern)
Czech Republic v Norway at 16:00 (10 a.m. eastern)

Saturday Nov 13

Poland v Czech Republic at 16:00 (10 a.m. eastern)
Hungary v Norway at 20:00 (2 p.m. eastern)

Sunday Nov 14

Czech Republic v Hungary at 16:00 (10 a.m. eastern)
Norway v Poland at 20:00 (2 p.m. eastern)

How to Watch

Czech Republic: CT Sport, TV Tipsport
Norway: TV Norge
Poland: TVP Sport
Other: Olympic Channel/IIHF Site

What to watch for

  • Every team in this group is battling for their first Olympic spot.
  • Czech Republic is the favorite here. At 2021 Worlds, they went 4-0 which obviously included beating Hungary, 4-2. They scored 16 while only letting in three goals, look for a similar number here in this group.
  • Hungary made their first appearance in the top tier of Worlds this past August. It was a tough go for them only winning one of their four games in Group B. A key for them will be finding more depth; Fanni Gasparics scored half of their goals which is not ideal.
  • Poland played their way in to this group by tooth and nail. They were tied in points going into the final game against the Netherlands. They scored three unanswered goals in the final seven minutes of the game to win.
  • Norway has been hanging around in Division IA for quite a while. They haven’t been able to crack the top spot though, with their best place being second. They - and aforementioned Poland - are clearly the underdogs here.

Group D

Germany hosts Austria, Denmark, and Italy.

Schedule

Thursday Nov 11

Germany v Austria at 17:15 (11:15 a.m. eastern)
Denmark v Italy 20:45 (2:45 p.m. eastern)

Saturday Nov 13

Italy v Germany at noon (6 a.m. eastern)
Denmark v Austria at 15:30 (9:30 a.m. eastern)

Sunday Nov 14

Germany v Denmark at noon (6 a.m. eastern)
Austria v Italy at 15:30 (9:30 a.m. eastern)

How to Watch

Germany: MagentaSport
Denmark: DRTV
Austria: ORF Sport+
Other: Olympic Channel/IIHF Site

What to Watch For

  • Two of these four teams have played in the Olympics - Italy (2006 as the host nation) and Germany (2002, 2006, 2014).
  • Germany will be without their star goaltender Jenny Harss due to COVID. Harss backstopped Germany to their only two win in the last Worlds so that’s a pretty big loss for the host nation, especially considering they only scored seven goals in four games.
  • Austria’s consistently finished between second and fourth in Division IA Worlds for the past few years, but obviously hasn’t cracked that elusive promotion spot of first. PHF fans will see a familiar name on this roster in Janine Weber which should help them in a fairly wide open group.
  • Denmark played in the senior Worlds this past August for the first time since 1992, and it was a bit of a rough go for them. They didn’t win a single game and only scored three goals. They lost 3-1 to Germany in that tournament so their rematch will be a good indicator of what they’ve learned in the time off.
  • Italy qualified for the tournament after a solid showing in the initial qualification tournament scoring 13 goals across three games. They scored two in the third period - with the game winning goal coming from Anna Caumo - to continue on. Their youth is both a positive and a negative.
  • This group is a toss up and should be really fun to watch.

Group E

Sweden hosts France, Korea, and Slovakia.

Schedule

Thursday Nov 11

France v Korea at 15:00 (9 a.m. eastern)
Slovakia v Sweden at 19:00 (1 p.m. eastern)

Saturday Nov 13

France v Slovakia at noon (6 a.m. eastern)
Sweden v Korean at 16:00 (10 a.m. eastern)

Sunday Nov 14

Korea v Slovakia at noon (6 a.m. eastern)
Sweden v France at 19:00 (1 p.m. eastern)

How to Watch

Sweden: SVT (most games) and Svenska Hockey TV (game KOR-SVK)
France: Sport en France
Other: Olympic Channel/IIHF Site

What to watch for

  • Only France has never played in the Olympics. Slovakia played in 2010, Korea played in 2018, and Sweden has played in every Olympics to date including winning a bronze medal in 2002 and a silver in 2006.
  • Having to play into the Olympics is a new spot for Sweden to be in as previously they’ve auto-qualified based on their rank. But a streak of poor play knocked them out of the top six - and out of the top tier of Worlds to boot. Because of that, while they’ve played exhibition games, they haven’t played in an international tournament since being relegated back in 2019. They’re going to be hungry at home, and the favorites to win this group because of that.
  • France was promoted up to the top division of Worlds for the first time for the 2019 tournament before quickly being relegated that same year. It wasn’t a great showing for them back then but they have a lot of promise. This will be a good test to see how they stack up against the rest of the world, especially since COVID has cancelled lower division tournaments for the past two years.
  • Slovakia bounced between Division IA and Division IB for Worlds pretty regularly before the pandemic hit. They found some stability in 2018 and 2019 staying in IA for both season.
  • Korea is the qualifying nation in this group. They barely snuck out of the group - despite losing their final game - due to tiebreaker rules.

Olympics

The US, Canada, Switzerland, Finland, Russian Olympic Committee, and Japan already qualified based on their rankings. China also has qualified as the host nation.