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2018 World Junior Hockey Championship: Canada vs. Finland — Preview, start time, TV schedule, and lineups

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Victor Mete and Team Canada go up against Joni Ikonen and Team Finland on the first day of the WJC.

2012 World Junior Hockey Championships - Bronze Medal - Canada v Finland Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images

The 2018 World Junior Hockey Championship is finally here, and Canada will be facing off against Finland in the second game of the day at Buffalo’s KeyBank Center. Both teams boast impressive talent on the blue line, and while the goaltending edge goes to Carter Hart, both starters could pose a threat to any opposing offence. Neither team really has an offensive superstar like in past tournaments, but the two rosters promise an entertaining matchup.

With the status of Canada’s Dante Fabbro uncertain, head coach Dominique Ducharme told media he planned to dress seven defencemen for their first game of the tournament. The alternate captain returned to full practice on Saturday, and skated with the team on Christmas Day. While Fabbro is expected to play this afternoon, Ducharme has said he plans to ease him into the lineup as he recovers from a lower-body injury.

Finnish defenceman Robin Salo sat out of Monday’s practice due to illness, so it is possible he won’t play in today’s game, though he has been registered on the official roster.

How to watch

Puck drop: 4:00 PM EST / 1:00 PM PST
In Canada: TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5, TSN 4K (English,) RDS (French)
In the United States: NHL Network
Streaming: TSNGO

Team Canada’s projected lineup

CAN Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
#9 Dillon Dube #23 Sam Steel #25 Jordan Kyrou
#12 Boris Katchouk #27 Robert Thomas #16 Taylor Raddysh
#11 Jonah Gadjovich #20 Michael McLeod #19 Drake Batherson
#14 Maxime Comtois #21 Brett Howden #24 Alex Formenton
#17 Tyler Steenbergen

CAN Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
#28 Victor Mete #3 Conor Timmins
#10 Kale Clague #8 Dante Fabbro
#2 Jake Bean #7 Cale Makar
#6 Cal Foote

CAN Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
#31 Carter Hart
#1 Colton Point

Team Finland’s projected lineup

FIN Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
#20 Eeli Tolvanen #9 Janne Kuokkanen #13 Kristian Vesalainen
#32 Aleksi Heponiemi #27 Joni Ikonen #12 Otto Koivula
#3 Juha Jääskä #15 Joona Koppanen #21 Markus Nurmi
#34 Rasmus Kupari #22 Aapeli Räsänen #33 Jere Innala

FIN Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
#2 Miro Heiskanen #6 Juuso Välimäki
#7 Olli Juolevi #28 Henri Jokiharju
#23 Urho Vaakanainen #4 Robin Salo
#36 Kasper Kotkansalo

FIN Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
#1 Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen
#31 Niilo Halonen