Latvia came up with a huge upset over Switzerland in the qualifying round to advance to the quarterfinal. Their reward for that triumph is the right to play the defending Gold medalists in Canada. The Canadians are favored in every conceivable way in this matchup.
These two nations haven’t met since 1936, when Canada prevailed 11-0 in Germany. This is only Latvia’s fifth appearance in the Winter Olympics men’s ice hockey tournament, and the odds seem good that they’ll be able to improve on that previous blowout against Canada.
Regardless of what happens in this quarterfinal matchup, this is the farthest that any Latvian hockey team has gone in a Winter Games. Against the Swiss, they made history. Will that forward momentum be enough to give them a prayer against a loaded Canadian team?
Latvia rosters all of one NHL player, while the Canadians have struggled to find roster spots for both the reigning Norris Trophy winner (P.K. Subban) and the league’s top scorer from 2013 (Martin St. Louis). If you Google the phrase David vs Goliath right now, don’t be shocked to see a preview of Canada vs Latvia.
Looking for how and where to catch this contest? Look no further.
Date: February 19
Start Time: 12:00 P.M. ET
Location: Sochi, Russia
TV Info: MSNBC
Live Stream: NBC Live Extra