LBC GameThread: Men's Olympic Qualification Playoffs

The winner of the Czech Republic-Slovakia game will face Team USA in the quarterfinals. - Bruce Bennett

The teams seeded 5-12 battle to make it to the quarterfinals where Sweden, the United States, Canada and Finland await.

Top of the morning to you! We enter the must-win stage of the Olympic tournament today with four qualification playoff round games from Sochi. With the exception of Russia-Norway, the three other games could see the lower seed go through. I know Switzerland will be a heavy favorite against Lativa, but the Swiss struggle mightily to score at times and Latvia has been a surprisingly tough opponent so far, so I wouldn't be stunned (surprised, yes) to see the Latvians pull off a big upset. Florida Panthers forward Tomas Kopecky (head injury) is out for the rest of the tournament.

  • Qualification Playoffs

Slovenia (8) vs. Austria (9) - Bolshoy Ice Dome 3:00 a.m. EST (NBCSN)

winner plays: Sweden

Russia (5) vs. Norway (12) - Bolshoy Ice Dome 7:30 a.m. EST (NBCSN)

winner plays: Finland

Switzerland (6) vs. Latvia (11) - Bolshoy Ice Dome 12:00 p.m. EST (NBCSN or MSNBC)

winner plays: Canada

Czech Republic (7) vs. Slovakia (10) - Shayba Arena 12:00 p.m. EST (NBCSN or MSNBC)

winner plays: United States

* Games can also be seen on nbcolympics.com (you will need to verify your cable/satellite account)

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