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2019 World Junior Hockey Championship schedule: December 26, 2018

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Everything you need to know about the tournament’s first day.

Canada v Czech Republic: Semifinals - 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship Photo by Kevin Hoffman/Getty Images

Group A Preliminary Games

4 PM ET: Czech Republic vs Switzerland

The first game of the 2019 tournament features a Czech Republic team that may very well feature the most important line in the entire tournament. The Czechs will rely on Martin Necas, Filip Zadina and Martin Kaut who will have their second straight tournament together after leading the Czechs to the bronze medal game last year. Switzerland will be looking to get off to a strong start and will rely on their players with North American experience like Phillip Kurashev and Valentin Nussbaumer. The game will be shown on TSN 1/4/5 and RDS in Canada and NHL Network in the USA.

8 PM ET: Canada vs Denmark

The defending Gold Medal winners will look to continue their run of success as hosts this year. This year, the Canadians will feature Habs second-round pick Josh Brook who is expected to be in their top four and Nick Suzuki who is expected to be in their top six. For Denmark, they had their first taste of the relegation round last year, but survived against Belarus. The challenge against Canada will be steep, but they will look to use this game to work towards getting back to the quarterfinal. The game will be on TSN 1/3/4/5 and RDS in Canada and NHL Network in the United States.

Group B Preliminary Games

6:30 PM ET: United States vs Slovakia

Habs prospects Ryan Poehling and Cayden Primeau are expected to play key roles for the United States as they try to get back to the top steps of the podium. The Hughes brothers, Jack and Quinn, will play their first World Junior game together as well. Slovakia is returning a lot of players from last year, and will look to make life for their opponents difficult in what is a very tough group. The game will be on TSN 2 and RDS2 in Canada, NHL Network in the US.

10:30 PM ET: Finland vs Sweden

Finland is looking to get back to glory, and they have the team to do it. Three players with NHL experience this year are leading the way, in Urho Vaakanainen, Henri Jokiharju, and Eeli Tolvanen as well as 2019 top prospect Kaapo Kakko. For Sweden, they also have a bunch of top prospects, especially on defence which continues to be the strength of the team. Two Canadiens prospects will go head to head in this heated rivalry, in Jacob Olofsson and Jesse Ylönen. The game will be on TSN 3/5 and RDS in Canada, NHL Network in the US.

All games shown on TSN will be streamed on TSN Go in Canada, but it requires a subscription to TSN.