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World Cup of Hockey Schedule

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Televised hockey has finally returned to us.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

World Cup of Hockey exhibition action begins today at 12:30 Eastern.

Rangers Ryan McDonagh, Derek Stepan, Mats Zuccarello, Henrik Lundqvist, and J.T. Miller will soon be stepping onto the ice and competing in this year's unique tournament.

Here is what Hank said about the WCoH in an article published on NHL.com by Dan Rosen today.

"I'm excited. I think it's going to be a great tournament. Any time you play for your country it's a very special feeling. I still don't know yet how it's going to feel compared to the Olympics, just have to play and see. It's how it started for me, watching the national team play. It's always been very special to put that jersey on, and you're extremely proud every time you do it. The big thing too is you get to play against the best players, kind of like in an Olympic tournament. I'm looking forward to it."

It's hard to say what level of competition we will see in the WCoH, especially in the pre-tournament exhibition games, but it is the biggest thing happening in the world of hockey right now. There has been some eye-rolling about the mix tapes that are the Team Europe and Team North America rosters, but the vast majority of the elite players currently playing the game are partaking in the tournament. That is more than enough reason for most fans to try and find a way to catch some of the action.

There are three pre-tournament games today including Lundqvist's team Sweden against team Finland and Miller's team North America against Zuccarello's team Europe.

Here is a full schedule of the tournament.

Thursday, September 8
Team Czech Republic vs. Team Russia - Yubileyny Sports Palace, St. Petersburg
12:30 p.m. ET - ESPN3, SN1, TVA Sports 2

Team Sweden vs. Team Finland - Hartwall Arena; Helsinki
Noon ET/7 p.m. local - ESPN3, SN, TVA Sports

Team Europe vs. Team North America - Videotron Centre; Quebec City
8 p.m. ET - ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Friday, September 9
Team Canada vs. Team USA - Nationwide Arena; Columbus
7 p.m. ET - ESPNU, SN1, SN360, TVA Sports

Saturday, September 10
Team Finland vs. Team Sweden - Scandinavium; Gothenburg
Noon ET/6 p.m. local - ESPN3, SN1, TVA Sports 2

Team Russia vs. Team Czech Republic - O2 Arena; Prague
10:30 a.m. ET/4:30 p.m. local - ESPN3, SN360, TVA Sports

Team USA vs. Team Canada - Canadian Tire Centre; Ottawa
7 p.m. ET - ESPN3, SN, TVA Sports

Sunday, September 11
Team Europe vs. Team North America - Bell Centre; Montreal
6 p.m. ET - ESPN3, SN, TVA Sports

Tuesday, September 13
Team Finland vs. Team USA - Verizon Center; Washington, DC
7 p.m. ET - ESPN, SN1, TVA Sports

Wednesday, September 14
Team Czech Republic vs. Team North America - CONSOL Energy Center; Pittsburgh
3:30 p.m. ET - ESPN3, SN, SN1, TVA Sports

Team Canada vs. Team Russia - CONSOL Energy Center, Pittsburgh
7:30 p.m. ET - ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Team Sweden vs. Team Europe - Verizon Center; Washington, DC
7 p.m. ET - ESPN3, SN360, TVA Sports 2

2016 World Cup of Hockey Schedule

All Times Eastern (GMT -5)

All Games Played at Air Canada Centre, Toronto

Group A
Team Canada
Team Czech Republic
Team Europe
Team USA

Group B
Team Finland
Team North America
Team Russia
Team Sweden

Preliminary Round (round robin) (away team listed first)

All games at Air Canada Centre, Toronto

Saturday, Sept. 17

Team USA vs. Team Europe, 3:30 p.m., ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Team Czech Republic vs. Team Canada, 8 p.m., ESPNEWS, SN, TVA Sports

Sunday, Sept. 18

Team Sweden vs. Team Russia, 3 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Team North America vs. Team Finland, 8 p.m., ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Monday, Sept. 19

Team Europe vs. Team Czech Republic, 3 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Team Russia vs. Team North America, 8 p.m., ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Tuesday, Sept. 20

Team Finland vs. Team Sweden, 3 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Team Canada vs. Team USA, 8 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Wednesday, Sept. 21

Team North America vs. Team Sweden, 3 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Team Europe vs. Team Canada, 8 p.m., ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Thursday, Sept. 22

Team Finland vs. Team Russia, 3 p.m., ESPN, SN, TVA Sports

Team USA vs. Team Czech Republic, 8 p.m., ESPN2, SN, TVA Sports

Semifinals (single elimination; A1 vs. B2, B1 vs. A2)

Saturday, Sept. 24

Semifinal 1, 7 p.m., ESPN2, CBC, TVA Sports

Sunday, Sept. 25

Semifinal 2, 1 p.m., ESPN, CBC, TVA Sports

Final (best-of-three)

Tuesday, Sept. 27

Final Game 1, 8 p.m., ESPN, CBC, TVA Sports

Thursday, Sept. 29

Final Game 2, 8 p.m., ESPN2, CBC, TVA, TVA Sports

Saturday, Oct. 1

Final Game 3, 7 p.m. (if necessary), ESPN2, CBC, TVA, TVA Sports