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Canada battles Finland to open World Junior three-peat quest

Hockey Canada Owen Beck, Owen Allard - Hockey Canada

The 2024 IIHF World Junior Championship begins on Boxing Day with Canada battling Finland to begin their tournament.

Canada won the last two tournaments and are looking to three-peat for the first time since winning five straight between 2005-09.

Watch Canada take on Finland LIVE at 8:30 a.m. ET/5:30 a.m. PT on TSN1/3/4., and the TSN App.

The Canadians needed overtime magic to claim gold last year after surrendering a two-goal lead to Czechia in the third period. Arizona Coyotes prospect Dylan Guenther then sent the nation into a frenzy with his goal less than seven minutes into overtime to make Canada back-to-back champions.

Montreal Canadiens prospect Owen Beck is the lone returning player from last year's squad. He began last year's tournament as the 13th forward and recorded an assist in three games.

Beck, 19, has 16 goals and 30 points in 25 games with the Ontario Hockey League's Peterborough Petes and is expected to be part of the leadership group on Team Canada.

Canada also received NHL help on Dec. 18 when the Boston Bruins loaned forward Matthew Poitras to team for the tournament.

The 5-foot-11 forward played 27 games and helped the Bruins to a 19-5-5 record while recording five goals and 13 points.

Poitras played last season with the OHL's Guelph Storm and recorded 16 goals and 95 points in 63 games.

Fans will also get a good look at top prospect Macklin Celebrini, who is putting together his resume to present for the 2024 NHL Draft.

TSN Director of Scouting Craig Button ranks Celebrini first in his November draft list while TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie ranked him No.1 in his pre-season draft rankings.

Celebrini, 17, is leading NCAA's Boston University with 10 goals and 25 points in 15 games this season.

He also led Team Canada to a bronze medal at the World Under-18 Championship in April, registering six goals and 15 points in seven games.

Finland had a disappointing tournament last year, finishing fifth after losing 3-2 to archrival Sweden in the quarter-finals.

The Finns have five players returning to this year's tournament and a number of 2024 draft eligible players including top prospects Konsta Helenius and Emil Hemming.

Helenius, 17, was ranked No. 5 on Button's list and placed him at No. 7 on his pre-season draft rankings.

The 5-foot-11 forward has eight goals and 20 points in 28 games with Jukurit of Liiga, Finland's top hockey league.

Hemming, 17, is listed No. 12 on Button's list and wasn't ranked in McKenzie's pre-season rankings.

The 6-foot-2 forward has six goals and eight points in 26 games with TPS of Liiga.

How to watch 2024 IIHF World Junior Championship: Canada vs. Finland

You can watch Canada vs. Finland, along with every game at the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship, LIVE on TSN, and the TSN App.

When: Tuesday, Dec. 26

Main Coverage: 8:30 a.m.. ET/5:30 a.m. PT

Where to watch: TSN1, TSN3, TSN4,, TSN App.

Full Broadcast schedule can be found here.