Every Country’s 2022 Olympic Hockey Uniforms

The 2022 Winter Olympics are well underway from Beijing, China (yes, that’s the same Beijing, China that hosted the *Summer* Olympics a mere 14 years ago).

Today, I’m taking a country-by-country look at the uniforms which will be, and have been worn so far during the ice hockey competition, both the men’s and women’s tournaments.

Something to remember, the International Olympic Committee made it a rule (starting with the 2010 games) that countries are not permitted to wear their individual ice hockey federation logos on the chest of their uniforms — this means, no silhouetted player on a maple leaf logo for Canada, no ribbon-S’d “USA” wordmark, we’re getting basic, generic, national uniforms for each of these teams.

Presented below in alphabetical order, and not necessarily in order of how I’d like these countries to place in the final rankings… here we go!

CANADA

The Canadian set features white, black (ugh), and red options — yes, black is an official Hockey Canada team colour and has been for nearly thirty years!

Each of the designs incorporates two stripes above the elbow on either sleeve with player numbers worn on the ends of the shoulders in a swatch of colour. Two similar stripes are added around the socks of all three and the waist of just the white and red options, the black jersey has no waist striping.

Within the maple leaf crest (which is BLACK on 67% of these uniforms) are graphic lines to represent how a weather map shows snow and Arctic winds, this same idea has been implemented into the shoulders of the black jersey to also create a maple leaf pattern.

How did Canada get here?:
Qualified automatically in both men’s and women’s due to high IIHF ranking.

How did Canada do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Women’s:
Won Silver Medal after losing Gold Medal game in a shootout
Men’s: Won Bronze Medal game over Czech Republic


CHINA

Team China is dressed in red and yellow, the same colours used on their national flag. A thick red horizontal stripe covers the front of the jersey, trimmed in yellow, and with “CHINA” written inside, also in yellow. This trim style and colouring carry over to each sleeve of the jersey as well as onto the socks. The star of the Chinese team’s uniform is undoubtedly the goalie pads which feature two large golden dragons facing one another.

How did China get here?:
Qualified automatically in both men’s and women’s brackets as the host country of the 2022 Olympic Winter Games

How did China do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Women’s:
DNQ – Placed last in Group E of pre-qualifiers
Men’s: DNQ – Placed last in Group L of preliminary qualifiers


CZECH REPUBLIC

The Czechia (or the Czech Republic) national team is wearing their country’s coat of arms prominently on the chest of both their red and white jerseys. The shoulders feature a geometric pattern based on the design of their national flag.

How did the Czech Republic get here:
Men’s: Qualified automatically due to high IIHF ranking
Women’s: Finished first in Group C during qualifiers in November 2021

How did the Czech Republic do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s: Lost Bronze Medal game to Canada to finish 4th overall
Women’s: DNQ – Placed second in Group C of the final qualifying round


DENMARK

For Denmark’s first-ever appearance in hockey at the Winter Olympic games, the European country is embracing its national team’s “Ice Lions” nickname by blazoning the red lion across the chest of both their red and white options, this design is placed on a horizontal stripe. The lion itself is from the Denmark national coat of arms. Shoulders are the opposite colour of the base, and player numbers are a bit jarringly black on the shoulders of the reds and black on the backs of the whites.

How did Denmark get here?:
Men’s: First place of Group F during qualifiers in August 2021
Women’s: First place of Group D during qualifiers in November 2021

How did Denmark do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s: DNQ – Placed third in Group D of the final qualifying round
Women’s: DNQ – Placed last in Group C of the final qualifying round


FINLAND

Team Finland’s uniforms show the crowned lion from the Nordic nation’s 440-year-old coat of arms placed on a horizontal blue stripe. The “home” set is white, the “road” a navy blue. Both jerseys feature a darker blue dot pattern within this horizontal stripe. Player numbers are one colour, they’re that same light blue as the stripe on the white set, the navy blue jersey uses white numbers.

How did Finland get here?:
Qualified automatically in both men’s and women’s due to high IIHF ranking

How did Finland do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Women’s: Won Bronze Medal game over the Olympic Athletes from Russia
Men’s: Lost in quarterfinals to Canada finishing 6th overall


GERMANY (Men’s Only)

Team Germany’s uniforms are in the same black, red, and gold that make up the country’s national flag. On the chest is the national coat of arms, a black eagle with a red beak, feet, and tongue sticking out. This coat was first created in the 14th century, making it one of the oldest actively used national crests in the world.

How did Germany get here?:
Men’s: Qualified due to high IIHF ranking
Women’s: DNQ – finished third in the Group D qualifiers in November 2021

How did Germany do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s:
Won Silver Medal after losing Gold Medal game in overtime
Women’s: DNQ – Placed second in Group D in the final round of qualifiers


JAPAN (Women’s Only)

Team Japan’s uniforms depict the nation’s “Land of the Rising Sun” nickname on its chest through a series of increasingly larger horizontal red lines, “JAPAN” is written across the top-most bar. This striping pattern is replicated along each sleeve, and, in a bold move, flipped upside down to carry on down each of the player’s socks.

“The front chest and shoulder graphics are inspired by Japan’s well-known identity of ‘The Rising Sun’,” reads the official release. “The graphic line work creates an energetic source of power that represents the sun at the horizon line. These graphics are a balance that symbolizes the advanced level of ingenuity of the Japanese culture.”

How did Japan get here?:
Women’s: Qualified automatically due to high IIHF ranking
Men’s: DNQ – Runner-up in Group G of the pre-qualification tournament held way back in February 2020.

How did Japan do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Women’s:
Finished 6th after losing to Switzerland in the fifth place game
Men’s: DNQ – Finished last in Group E of the final qualification round


LATVIA (Men’s Only)

Team Latvia’s uniforms are white and “Latvian Red”, which is so dark it’s basically purple. The jerseys feature two horizontal stripes across the chest and across the upper arms with the country’s coat of arms (recoloured to match the jersey) and “LATVIJA” written across below.

How did Latvia get here?:
Men’s: Finished on top of Group E in the final qualifiers held in August 2021
Women’s: DNQ – Did not enter a team into the women’s Olympic qualifiers.

How did Latvia do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s:
DNQ – Finished as runner-up in Group E of the final qualifying round
Women’s: DNQ – Placed 3rd in Group E in the preliminary qualifying round


R.O.C.

The uniforms for the ROC are fairly basic — plain white and plain red without any striping on the arms or around the waist. Player numbers are single colour, pants are red, the only stripes are on the socks as we see two thick horizontal stripes on each. On the chest is the Russian Olympic Committee logo on a large white circle.

What is the ROC at the Olympics?
The ROC is the Russian Olympic Committee, they’re competing as the ROC rather than Russia as part of their punishment from the IOC for the doping scandal during the 2010s. Previously, they competed as OAR (or Olympic Athlete from Russia) during the 2018 Winter Olympics.

How did the ROC get here?:
Qualified for both men’s and women’s tournaments due to high IIHF ranking.

How did ROC do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s: Won Gold Medal with OT win over Germany while competing as OAR
Women’s: Lost Bronze Medal game to Finland, finishing 4th as OAR


SLOVAKIA (Men’s Only)

The Slovakian team uniforms are in the national colours of blue, white, and red. Shoulders are blue on the whites, white on the blues and are trimmed with red on both. The chest of the jersey features Slovakia’s coat of arms – a double cross in white (a symbol of the country’s Christian faith) with three blue hills representing three mountain ranges: Tatra, Fatra, and Matra.

How did Slovakia get here?:
Men’s: Finished first in Group D of the Olympic qualifiers held in August 2021
Women’s: DNQ – Came third in Group E of final qualifiers in November 2021.

How did Slovakia do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s: Finished 11th overall out of 12 teams
Women’s: DNQ – placed third in Group F of preliminary qualifiers


SWEDEN

Team Sweden’s uniform requires no explanation, they’re the Montreal Canadiens of the international hockey scene. Blue and yellow, as is their national flag, with three crowns on the chest giving the team their nickname “Tre Kronor”, which, yes, means Three Crowns in Swedish. Classic. Don’t touch ’em, Nike.

How did Sweden get here?:
Men’s: Qualified automatically due to high IIHF ranking
Women’s: Finished first in Group E of final qualifiers held in November 2021.

How did Sweden do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s: Finished 5th after losing in OT to Germany in the quarterfinals
Women’s: Finished 7th of 8, defeated host Korea in Seventh Place Game


SWITZERLAND

Switzerland’s uniforms simply display the country’s coat of arms – a white cross on a red shield, on the centre of their chest, placed on a red horizontal stripe. This stripe exists on both the red and white versions of the uniform, darkened slightly for the reds in order to see it. This bar is also worn around each sleeve and the socks.

How did Switzerland get here?:
Qualified for both men’s and women’s tournaments due to high IIHF ranking.

How did Switzerland do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Men’s:
Finished 10th of 12, lost in OT to Germany in the playoff qualifiers
Women’s: Finished 5th after loss to OAR in quarterfinals


UNITED STATES

There are three national USA Hockey uniforms from Nike here — one white, one blue, and then one a slightly more different blue. All three feature a horizontal band with a field of stars around the entirety of the jersey, “USA” written within it in white with red trim. The style of striping varies slightly between jerseys, the white and navy blue sets go with a royal/white/navy/white/red combo while the royal blue jersey simplifies it a bit with just two navy blue stripes with a thin royal blue line between them.

USA Hockey said the uniform was a tribute to American pride and ingenuity, paying homage to the nation’s industrial past and innovative future. The double stripe feature on the light blue jersey, in particular, was inspired by American “muscle cars”.

How did the United States get here?:
Qualified for both men’s and women’s tournaments due to high IIHF ranking.

How did the United States do at the 2018 Olympics?:
Women’s: Won Gold Medal with a shootout victory over Canada
Men’s: Finished 7th of 12 after a quarterfinal loss to the Czech Republic


And that’s it! Enjoy the 2022 Winter Olympics hockey tournament, and while on the men’s side you’re left without the National Hockey League players taking part it’s still kind of nice to see the lesser-known players get their day in the sun now and then too. So, soak it in! Of course, there’s no such issue on the women’s bracket, you’re seeing the absolute best vs the best in those games.