Catching up on the group play from the 2022 Winter Olympics

A quick update on everything happening in Beijing.

If Chicago Blackhawks hockey has you down, there’s another hockey tournament occurring on the other side of the world which could offer a welcome respite to all the happenings at 1901 W. Madison Street.

The men’s hockey portion of the 2022 Winter Olympics started last Wednesday with the preliminary rounds wrapping up after Sunday evening’s 3-2 win for Team USA over Germany. The qualifying games get started late Monday night when Slovakia faces Germany.

The women’s hockey portion is already down to its gold medal game, with the two expected finalists in USA and Canada adding another chapter to their storied hockey rivalry. That game starts at 10:10 on Wednesday night, with USA’s lineup including Kendall Coyne Schofield, a Blackhawks player development coach and youth hockey growth specialist.

There’s still plenty to be decided with the men’s hockey teams, though. Here’s where things stand heading into the four qualification playoff games:

Group A

  1. USA
  2. Canada
  3. Germany
  4. China

Team USA clinched the No. 1 seed with its 3-2 win over Germany and also knocked off Canada 4-2 last Friday. An 8-0 win over China completed the group sweep for the Americans and a familiar name was in net against Germany and China: Drew Commesso, a Boston University goalie whom the Blackhawks drafted in the second round (46th overall) of the 2020 NHL Draft). No word yet on whether or not Commesso will be in net for the tournament’s remaining games.

China has one Blackhawks tie, as well: Jieke Kailiaosi. You may know him as Jake Chelios, son of Blackhawks legend Chris Chelios and sibling of in-game studio analyst Caley Chelios. This paywalled article from the Wall Street Journal details how it happened.

Group B

  1. ROC
  2. Denmark
  3. Czech Republic
  4. Switzerland

The ROC (aka Russia) is the top seed here after defeating Switzerland and Denmark but losing 6-5 to the Czech Republic. Artur Kayumov — a second-round pick of the Hawks in 2016 — appeared in two games for ROC but did not tally a point. Former Blackhawks forward Peter Regin skates for Denmark.

Group C

  1. Finland
  2. Sweden
  3. Slovakia
  4. Latvia

The Finnish path to the No. 1 seed in this group was a trio of victories over Slovakia, Latvia and Sweden. Finland’s roster includes former Blackhawks defenseman Ville Pokka while the Swedes boast a pair of Stanley Cup winning Blackhawks in Joakim Nordstrom and Marcus Kruger. Slovakia has its former Blackhawks ties as well in Tomas Jurco and Marko Dano.

Here are the start times for the qualification playoff games (all times CT):

  • Slovakia vs. Germany, Monday, 2/14 at 10:10 p.m.
  • Denmark vs. Latvia, Monday, 2/14 at 10:10 p.m.
  • Czech Republic vs. Switzerland, Tuesday, 2/15 at 2:40 a.m.
  • Canada vs. China, Tuesday, 2/15 at 7:10 a.m./

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