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Olympic Ice Hockey
© LaPresse

Ice hockey's origins are said to have in first appeared at several places at once. Suffice to say that it developed in Europe during the Middle Ages, when field hockey was taken to frozen ponds and lakes during the cold winter months.

The sport later developed throughout North America, where British soldiers played a similar game of "hurley" in army forts throughout Canada. Of course, ice hockey soon caught on to become a major national pastime in Canada and quickly headed south to the United States.

Men’s ice hockey became an Olympic sport at the 1920 Summer Olympic Games in Antwerp, then was added to the inaugural Winter Olympic Games at Chamonix in 1924. As it continues to do, Canada historically dominated the sport in the 20th century followed by the Russians, Americans, Swedes and Czechs.

 

Canada - CBC Olympics CBC

February 2018 Olympic Ice Hockey Schedule & Medal Events
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figure skating                             event final     event final


scheduled event   medal event event final

 

 

Women’s ice hockey was added to the Olympic program at the Winter Olympic Games in Nagano in 1998, when the American men's team took the spotlight by defeating the favored Canadians in a memorable match for the gold medal. The following "grudge match" at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics saw a reversal of fortune for the men's U.S. Olympic hockey as the Canadian team took home the gold.

It was the Swedes who took top honors at the Turino games in 2006, but four years later America and Canada were once again battling it out on the ice at Vancouver -- with Canada once again capturing the gold in 2010 and (against Sweden) in 2014.

In PyeongChang, the scene is set for more non-stop rivalry as the Russian, Canadian and American teams take to the ice once again. Who will grab the gold in 2018? Stay tuned...


DID YOU KNOW? Olympic hockey fun facts


The 1980 "Miracle on Ice" made
front page news from coast to coast.


• The Russians were the clear favorite to win at the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics, having won gold in the four previous Games. But by a stroke of luck, the Americans - a rag-tag team of amateur college players - somehow made it through to the finals to face the Soviet juggernaut. Down 3-2, the Americans battle back to score two goals in the last 10 minutes of the game for the win -- in what quickly became known as "The Miracle on Ice."

• The Slovakian women’s hockey team qualified for the 2010 Olympics by beating Bulgaria with an unheard-of final score of 82-0. They later lost to team Canada in Vancouver 18-0.

• The first Olympic ice hockey tournament was played at the 1920 Summer Olympics, four years before the inaugural Winter Olympics in 1924. In that first-ever Olympic ice hockey program, Canada beat Sweden to take the gold.

 

More about Olympic hockey around the Web:


International Olympic Committee - Ice Hockey - Overview of the ice hockey competitions, list of events, Olympic records, athlete profiles, picture gallery, related links.

IIHF - International Ice Hockey Federation - Worldwide coverage of the sport including news, schedules, championship scores and records, related links.

USA Hockey - The official site of Team USA featuring headlines news, calendar of tournaments and events, details on sponsored programs, related links.

Hockey Canada - The official site of Team Canada including news, photos, championship standings and results, details on sponsored programs, special sections for parents, safety information and more.

Everything You Need to Know About Ice Hockey - Archived Washington Post feature with a good overview of Olympic hockey, rules and regs, a special look at infractions, game history, Olympic records.

 

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