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Canadians kick off world juniors against the Czechs on Boxing Day

NHL.com @NHL

OTTAWA - Canada's defence of four consecutive gold-medal wins at the world junior hockey championship will begin on Boxing Day against the Czech Republic.

Ottawa will play host to this year's tournament from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5. The 31 games will be split between the Civic Centre and SBP Arena.

The Canadians will be joined by the U.S., the Czech Republic, Germany and Kazakhstan in Group A while Sweden, Russia, Finland, Latvia and Slovakia will compete in Group B.

Last year the Canadians beat Sweden in the final to win the gold while Russia picked up the bronze medal.

The bronze and gold medal games will be played on Jan. 5 at SBP Arena.

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