The 12 teams are seeded in three groups of four teams each and will play a round robin within their group including 18 games (three per team).
The teams and groups were seeded according to the 2012 IIHF Men’s World Ranking. The tournament includes the top-eight nations, three qualifiers and host Korea.
The 2018 Olympic Winter Games Men’s Ice Hockey Tournament is operated according to the same format like in Vancouver 2010 and Sochi 2014.
The Final Round includes 4 Qualification Playoff Games, 4 Quarter-Final Games, 2 Semi-Final Games, one Bronze Medal Game and one Gold Medal Game:
At the conclusion of the Preliminary Round all 12 teams will be ranked according to a special criterion. This ranking will be used for seeding the teams in the Qualification Playoff games and will used for calculating the Final Ranking at the conclusion of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games Men’s Tournament.
The following criteria will be used in the order presented to determine this ranking following completion of the Preliminary Round (1D – 12D):
After the Preliminary Round, 1D, 2D, 3D and 4D will receive a bye into the Quarter-Finals and will be named as the Home Team for their Quarter-Final pairing. The teams ranked 5-12 will play in the Qualification Playoff games called Group E with the following match-ups:
The four winning teams of the Qualification Playoff games will advance to the Quarter Final Round. The four losing teams of the Qualification Playoff games will be ranked 9 through 12 according to their ranking after the Preliminary Round.
The Quarter-Final Games will be played with the following match-ups (Group F ):
The four winning teams of the Quarter-Final games will advance to the Semi-Finals. The four losing teams of the Quarter Finals will be ranked 5 through 8 according to their ranking after the Preliminary Round.
The Semi-Final games will be played with the following match-ups. The home team will be the higher ranked team as determined at the completion of the Preliminary Round (Group D):
The two winning teams of the Semi-Finals will play for the Gold Medal while the two losing teams of the Semi-Finals will play for the Bronze Medal. The team with the higher Preliminary Round ranking will be the home team in each medal game.
For all games points shall be awarded as follows:
The maximum number of players allowed on a tournament roster in the 2018 Olympic men’s ice hockey tournament is 22 skaters and 3 goalies.
During a game, a team may enter (dress) 20 skaters and 2 goalkeepers on the official game sheet.
If a game is tied at the end of regulation time, a five-minute overtime period shall be played after a three-minute intermission. The teams will not change ends for the overtime period. The game will end when the five minutes have expired or when a goal is scored; the scoring team will be declared the winner. If no goal is scored in the overtime period then the Penalty-Shot Shootout Procedure will apply. All overtime periods of any IIHF preliminary-round or round-robin game shall be played with each team at the numerical strength of three (3) skaters and one (1) goalkeeper for games of the preliminary round.
Overtime procedure in Play-Off Games:
If no goal is scored in the overtime period then the Penalty-Shot Shootout (PSS) procedure will apply. The following procedure will be utilized:
The tie-breaking system for two teams with the same number of points in a standing will be the game between the two teams, the winner of the game taking precedence.
Due to the fact that the three-point system does not allow a game to end in a tie, then the following tie breaking procedure is applicable when three or more teams are tied in points in a Championship standing.
Should three or more teams be tied on points, then a tie breaking formula will be applied as follows, creating a sub-group amongst the tied teams. This process will continue until only two or none of the teams remain tied. In the case of two tied teams remaining, the game between the two would then be the determining tie-breaker as the game could not end as a tie. In the case of none of the teams being tied, the criteria specified in the respective step applies.
Step 1: Taking into consideration the games between each of the tied teams, a sub-group is created applying the points awarded in the direct games amongst the tied teams from which the teams are then ranked accordingly.
Step 2: Should three or more teams still remain tied in points then the better goal difference in the direct games amongst the tied teams will be decisive.
Step 3: Should three or more teams still remain tied in points and goal difference then the highest number of goals scored by these teams in their direct games will be decisive
Step 4: Should three or more teams still remain tied in points, goal difference and goals scored then the results between each of the three teams and the closest best-ranked team outside the sub-group will be applied. In this case the tied team with the best result (1. points, 2. goal difference, 3. more goals scored) against the closest best ranked-team will take precedence
Step 5: Should the teams still remain tied, then the results between each of the three teams and the next highest best-ranked team outside the sub-group will be applied.
Step 6: Should the teams still remain tied after these five steps have been exercised then Sport considerations will be applied and the teams will be ranked by their positions coming into the Championship (seeding).
The IIHF has introduced its guidelines for the use of coach’s challenges during the Men’s and Women’s Olympic ice hockey tournaments.
There are two situations possible for issuing the Coach’s Challenge:
Only one Coach’s Challenge per team per stoppage will be permitted. Coaches can challenge an offside call at any time except for the final minute of the third period and during overtime. If a Coach's Challenge is not reversed, the team will be assessed a bench minor penalty. In the case of a goalie interference challenge, teams must possess at least one 30-second time-out. If the call is not reversed, the team will lose the time-out.
After the scoring of the goal in the final minute of play in the 3rd period and at any point in Overtime (in any games), the IIHF Video Goal Judge Booth Operations can initiate the review of any scenario that would otherwise be subject to a Coach’s Challenge.
Click here for full information on the procedure.
Click here to download the IIHF’s Rule Book and Sport Regulations.