Tournament Format

For each gender, the six teams are divided into two, three-team groups in the Preliminary Round. Teams are made up of 17 players (15 skaters, 2 goaltenders).

After a single round-robin series in each group, the top two teams from each group advance to the semi-finals. The semi-final winners will move onto the gold medal game while the losers will play in the bronze medal game.

Game time

A game consists of three 15-minute periods followed by the penalty-shot shootout procedure if the teams remain tied. Intermissions are 15 minutes long.

A minor penalty is 90 seconds long, all other penalties as per the IIHF Rule Book.

Three Point System

For all games points shall be awarded as follows:


  • 3 points for the winning team at the conclusion of regulation time
  • 1 point for both teams at the conclusion of regulation time if the game is tied
  • An additional point earned for the team winning the game in a 5-minute overtime period, or the Penalty-Shot Shootout if the teams are still tied following conclusion of the overtime period
  • 0 points for the team losing the game in regulation time

Penalty-Shot Shootout Procedure

If the game is tied after regulation time, then the Penalty-Shot Shootout (PSS) procedure will apply. The following procedure will be utilized:


  • Three different shooters from each team will take alternate shots, until a decisive goal is scored.
  • If the game is still tied after three shots by each team, the PSS will continue with a tie-break shoot out by one player of each team, with a reversed shooting order. The same or new players can take the tie-break shots.
  • The same player can also be used for each shot by a team in the tie-break shoot-out.
  • Only the decisive goal will count in the result of the game.
  • Shots will be taken at both ends of the ice. The area of the ice to be used will be dry scraped.
  • A coin toss will determine which team takes the first shot, with the winner of the toss having the choice whether his team will shoot first or second.
  • Any player whose penalty was not over when regulation time ended cannot take the shots and must stay in the penalty box or in the dressing room.
  • The goaltenders will defend the same goal, as in the last period. The goaltenders from each team may be changed after each shot.
  • The players of both teams will take the shots alternately until a decisive goal is scored.
  • Only the decisive goal will count in the result of the game. It shall be credited to the team that scored the goal and charged against the team that was scored upon.

Tie breaking formula

The tie-breaking system for two teams with the same number of points in a standing will be the game between the two teams, the winner of the game taking precedence. 

Due to the fact that the three-point system does not allow a game to end in a tie, then the following tie breaking procedure is applicable when three teams are tied in points in a Championship standing.

Should three teams be tied on points, the process below will continue until only two or none of the teams remain tied. In the case of two tied teams remaining, the game between the two would then be the determining tie-breaker as the game could not end as a tie. In the case of none of the teams being tied, the criteria specified in the respective step applies.

Step 1: Should the three teams be tied in points then the better goal difference will be decisive. 

Step 2: Should the three teams still remain tied in points and goal difference, then the highest number of goals scored by these teams will be decisive

Step 3: Should the three teams still remain tied after these steps have been exercised, then Sport considerations will be applied and the teams will be ranked by their positions coming into the Championship (IIHF Youth Ranking 2023).

Final Ranking

The gold medal game and bronze medal game will determine the final ranking for the top-4 teams. The eliminated teams from the preliminary round will be ranked according to the following procedure:


1. Higher number of points,
2. Better goal difference,
3. Higher number of goals scored for,
4. Better seeding number

More information

Click here to download the IIHF’s Rule Book and Sport Regulations.