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Day-by-day guide to the 2022 Winter Olympics

Day-by-day guide to the 2022 Winter Olympics
Posted at 11:19 AM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2022-01-07 14:13:15-05

The Opening Ceremony for the 2022 Winter Olympics is just one month away. Although things can change between now and then, below is an overview of the biggest storylines expected for each day of the Games. With 15 sports and over 100 medal events on tap, there's a lot to watch this February, but these are the competitions you won't want to miss.

Day -2: Wednesday, February 2

The Winter Olympics get underway with the first set of round-robin games in mixed doubles curling. The United States, represented by the duo of Vicky Persinger and Chris Plys, takes on Australia in its opening game.

Day -1: Thursday, February 3

As the women's hockey tournament opens play, the U.S. team led by star forwards Hilary Knight, Brianna Decker and Kendall Coyne Schofield begins its title defense with a preliminary game against Finland. Elsewhere, mixed doubles curling continues with the U.S. playing Italy and Norway in a pair of games, and the qualifying rounds take place for men's and women's moguls.

Day 0: Friday, February 4

A light slate of competition is headlined by the start of the figure skating team event. The competition's first day features the men's short program, ice dance rhythm dance, and pairs short program. Then the XXIV Olympic Winter Games officially commence with the Opening Ceremony.

Day 1: Saturday, February 5

The women's skiathlon provides the first medal opportunity for U.S. cross-country skier Jessie Diggins. In one of the most memorable moments from PyeongChang 2018, the Minnesota native partnered up with Kikkan Randall to win the women's team sprint and give the U.S. its first-ever gold medal in cross-country skiing. Meanwhile, the U.S. women play the ROC in their second game of hockey's preliminary round, and Canada's Mikael Kingsbury attempts to defend his title in men's moguls.

Day 2: Sunday, February 6

In the women's snowboard slopestyle final, Jamie Anderson could become the first snowboarder to win gold in the same event at three consecutive Olympics. She's currently the only snowboarder to ever win gold in women's slopestyle since it became an Olympic event, but the U.S. star will face fierce competition from the likes of New Zealand's two-time world champion Zoi Sadowski-Synnott. Also, the figure skating team event continues with the women's short program and pairs free skate; 2018 silver medalist Chris Mazdzer — the first American man to win a medal in singles luge — tries to return to the podium in that event; and the U.S. has several medal contenders in women's moguls.

Day 3: Monday, February 7

Mikaela Shiffrin, who has expressed a desire to race all five Alpine disciplines at the Olympics, begins her competition slate with the women's giant slalom, the event she won gold in at PyeongChang 2018. Red Gerard and Dusty Henricksen look to keep the U.S. winning streak alive in the men's snowboard slopestyle final, but Canadian Mark McMorris and Norwegian Marcus Kleveland are also among the favorites. The figure skating team event concludes with the final routines in men's and women's singles and ice dance. U.S. speed skater Brittany Bowe, in search of her first individual Olympic medal, competes in the women's 1500m event.

Day 4: Tuesday, February 8

Nathan Chen is the gold medal favorite as the men's figure skating event begins with the short program; the most intense rivalry in women's hockey is renewed as the United States faces Canada in a preliminary game; and cross-country skiers Jessie Diggins and Rosie Brennan compete in the women's individual sprint. Meanwhile, the women's freeski big air final provides the first medal opportunities for teenage triple threats Eileen Gu (China) and Kelly Sildaru (Estonia), American Joey Mantia races the men's 1500m speed skating event, and the gold medal game takes place for mixed doubles curling.

Day 5: Wednesday, February 9

Mikaela Shiffrin returns to the slopes for her signature event, the women's slalom. She won slalom gold in 2014 before placing fourth in 2018, but now has a rival in the form of Slovakia's Petra Vlhova. Over in the Genting Snow Park, Shaun White and Chloe Kim are among the riders set to compete in snowboard halfpipe qualifying, and medals will be won in men's freeski big air and women's snowboard cross. And in the city, John Shuster's team begins its title defense in men's curling with a preliminary game against the ROC.

Day 6: Thursday, February 10

Chloe Kim is a heavy favorite to win a second straight gold medal in women's snowboard halfpipe, and U.S. teammate Maddie Mastro is a strong medal threat as well. The men's figure skating event, headlined by Nathan Chen, wraps up with the free skate. The men's hockey tournament features the United States playing host nation China in the first game of the preliminary round for both teams. Jessie Diggins and Rosie Brennan race the women's 10km for cross-country skiing. And in men's curling, the U.S. plays powerhouse Sweden, winner of the last three world titles.

Day 7: Friday, February 11

The men's snowboard halfpipe final takes place with Shaun White vying to become the first snowboarder to win four Olympic gold medals. The field is loaded with international contenders such as Australia's Scotty James and a strong Japanese team led by Yuto Totsuka, Ayumu Hirano and Ruka Hirano. Elsewhere, the super-G is the third race for women's Alpine skiing and is currently expected to include Mikaela Shiffrin on the start list. The defending gold medalist is Ester Ledecka, the multi-talented Czech star who pulled a stunning super-G upset in 2018 and also won gold in snowboarding's parallel giant slalom event. Over on the ice, U.S. short track skater Kristen Santos is a medal contender in the women's 1000m event.

Day 8: Saturday, February 12

Team USA faces Canada in a rivalry game during the men's hockey preliminary round. Both teams, however, will be without their NHL stars after the league opted not to send players to the Olympics this year. This day also marks the start of the ice dance competition and the Olympic debut of mixed team snowboard cross.

Day 9: Sunday, February 13

Erin Jackson, who qualified for the 2018 Games after just four months of training on ice, is in the midst of a breakout season and has become a gold medal favorite in the women's 500m speed skating event. In November, she became the first Black woman to win a long track speed skating World Cup race and then went on to win five of the first six pre-Olympic races. A new bobsled discipline, women's monobob, makes its Winter Olympic debut, with the competition's first two (out of four) runs. In men's hockey, Team USA closes out the preliminary round with a game against Germany.

Day 10: Monday, February 14

The final runs take place in women's monobob, and the U.S. has two pilots who could contend for gold. Kaillie Humphries, who previously competed for Canada but recently gained U.S. citizenship, won the event's inaugural world title in 2021, while U.S. teammate Elana Meyers Taylor has won multiple World Cup races this season. In other events, the ice dance competition wraps up with the free dance routines, semifinal games in women's hockey are likely to include Team USA, and the women's freeski slopestyle final offers the second medal opportunity for international stars Eileen Gu and Kelly Sildaru.

Day 11: Tuesday, February 15

The women's figure skating event begins with the short program. Russian skaters, led by teenagers Kamila Valiyeva and Alexandra Trusova, could sweep the podium, but the U.S. has an up-and-coming star in the form of 16-year-old Alysa Liu. In snowboarding, the men's and women's finals take place for big air. Depending on her result in slopestyle, Jamie Anderson could potentially become the first snowboarder to win five Olympic medals. Mikaela Shiffrin is expected to enter the women's downhill race, but the best U.S. medal hopes could come from Breezy Johnson. And also on this day, the U.S. has several medal contenders (Nick Goepper, Colby Stevenson, Alex Hall) for the men's freeski slopestyle final.

Day 12: Wednesday, February 16

After her 2018 win in the women's team sprint, Jessie Diggins will attempt to make magic happen in that event once again. But she'll have to do it with a new partner — Kikkan Randall is now retired — and racing a different style (classic instead of freestyle). Elsewhere, the knockout rounds start for men's hockey with the quarterfinals, and U.S. short track skater Kristen Santos is a medal contender in the women's 1500m event.

Day 13: Thursday, February 17

Barring any major upsets, the gold medal game for women's hockey is likely to come down to the United States vs. Canada once again. The two countries have met in the final at the last three Winter Olympics and have dominated the world championship since its inception in 1990. Team USA's shootout victory over Canada at PyeongChang 2018 proved to be one of the most dramatic moments of the last Games, and another rematch will be highly anticipated. Meanwhile, women's figure skating concludes with the free skate, American Brittany Bowe is the reigning world champion for the women's 1000m speed skating event, and Mikaela Shiffrin could enter her fifth and final race of the Olympics, the Alpine combined. Shiffrin won silver in the women's combined in 2018.

Day 14: Friday, February 18

Figure skating's final event, pairs skating, gets underway with the short program; the men's hockey tournament reaches the semifinals; and Kaillie Humphries and Elana Meyers Taylor return to the track for the first two (out of four) runs in two-woman bobsled. Depending on their results in the big air and slopestyle contests, Eileen Gu and/or Kelly Sildaru could be in line for a third medal when they drop in for the women's freeski halfpipe final.

Day 15: Saturday, February 19

David Wise is the two-time defending gold medalist in men's freeski halfpipe, but the list of favorites is led by New Zealand's Nico Porteous and 2018 silver medalist Alex Ferreira. After their improbable win in 2018, John Shuster's team hopes to once again be part of the men's curling final on this day. Kaillie Humphries has won back-to-back world titles in the two-woman bobsled and will look to win her fourth straight Olympic medal — and first as a member of Team USA — in that event, while Elana Meyers Taylor could also win a fourth straight medal. The final figure skating medals are awarded at the conclusion of the pairs free skate.

Day 16: Sunday, February 20

The final day of the Winter Olympics includes gold medal games for men's hockey and women's curling. The United States hasn't won gold in men's hockey since the Miracle on Ice in 1980 and will be even bigger underdogs this year due to the absence of NHL players. The ROC, which should be loaded with players from Russia's domestic KHL teams, is considered the favorite. Over on the snow, Jessie Diggins races one last cross-country skiing event, the women's 30km, and back in the city, figure skating shifts from competition to entertainment with a star-studded exhibition gala. Finally, the Closing Ceremony officially brings the Games to an end.