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Here's Your Reminder That The Rescheduled 2022 World Juniors Get Going Tomorrow. AKA Your Best Chance To Watch Connor Bedard

Codie McLachlan. Getty Images.

You might remember that the 2022 World Juniors were cancelled midway through the tournament last December because of COVID. Here we are just over 7 months later and we're getting this shit going again in Edmonton starting tomorrow. Now unfortunately just because the World Juniors were cancelled doesn't necessarily mean the whole world would come to a stop. Life went on and a whole bunch of shit happened in those 7+ months since the tournament was ended abruptly. 

For example, the 2022 NHL Draft happened. When we previewed the World Juniors back in December, we were talking about Slovakia being a dark horse in the tournament because they had a couple of guys who could potentially be top 10 picks in the draft with Juraj Slafkovsky and Simon Nemec. Then those two guys went #1 and #2 overall in the draft this summer, and now neither of them will be participating in this edition of the World Juniors. Same with Shane Wright who was the projected 1st overall pick in December, and then dropped down to the 4th overall pick this summer to Seattle. 

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On top of guys who were originally participating in the World Juniors but won't anymore due to NHL obligations, you have guys like Owen Power and Matty Beniers getting ready for their rookie NHL seasons. Then there's also the entire Russian team headlined by Matvei Michkov who won't be competing in this tournament due to the invasion of Ukraine. When the tournament ended in December Connor Bedard and Matvei Michkov led the tournament in goals. Both of those guys were only 16 at the time and not draft eligible until 2023. Unfortunately we'll only get a chance to watch Bedard this time around. 

Speaking of Bedard…well this hurts to say but if we're being totally honest with ourselves here, I feel like watching Connor Bedard play is really the only thing to get excited about for this tournament. It just doesn't have nearly the same pop as it does in the winter. Every year the World Juniors comes around and it's one of the best tournament in sports. But the fact that this one just sort of crept up out of nowhere in the summer without a Russian team in the tournament, and then the fact that Hockey Canada is currently enemy #1 in the country with that entire disaster going on there? It's hard to get excited for this edition of the tournament. But I'm sure that'll all change once Connor Bedard does something preposterously filthy like this and then you realize you desperately need your favorite NHL team to suck this year to get a chance to draft him first overall in 2023. 

By the way--without Russia in the tournament, the USA schedule is about as boring as it gets. Team USA starts off group stage play tomorrow night (August 9th) at 10pm ET against Germany. Then they play on the 11th at 10pm against Switzerland, they take on Austria at 2pm on the 13th, and then finish up group play against Sweden at 10pm on the 14th. In December they had Sweden, Slovakia and Russia in their group so yeah…this is a far cry away from that. But still, it's always a great time to root on the boys in Red, White, and Blue. So I'll try my best to stay up to get the live blogs going for those games. 

P.S. -- Obviously these are going to be a little outdated at this point, but the majority of the teams are still the same. So here are all my World Juniors Preview blogs from the end of 2021 to get you ready for the tournament. 

2022 World Juniors Group A (original) Preview

2022 World Juniors Group B (original) Preview

@JordieBarstool