2016 Rio Olympics: Everything You Need To Know – Channels, Dates, Countries, Sports, More

A few sports have already started playing for the 2016 Rio Olympics, but things will officially get underway this evening with the opening ceremony. From there, the Olympic Games will continue for 19 days in Brazil with numerous sports, thousands of athletes, and medals to be won. In order to watch as much as possible, you need to know the dates, channels, sporting events, and just who is taking part in the competitions.

Believe it or not, there will be an obscene amount of Olympics coverage from start to finish as NBC Olympics is reporting they will show 6,755 hours of programming. Breaking things down, that averages out to 356 hours of coverage per day for the 19 days and that’s a lot of events and a lot of athletes.

Tonight’s opening ceremony will air on NBC and after that, the Olympics will begin in full on the NBC family of networks and channels. Here are the networks that fans can watch their countries compete on:

  • NBC – broadcast network
  • Telemundo – broadcast network
  • CNBC – cable channel
  • USA Network – cable channel
  • NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) – cable channel
  • Bravo – cable channel
  • MSNBC – cable channel
  • NBC Universo – cable channel
  • Golf Channel – cable channel

There are some other cable channels that will also carry coverage for specific sports such as basketball and soccer. NBC News reported that these channels are temporary as is a unique 4K Ultra HD channel for those wanting things a bit higher in quality.

NBC is set to have a lot of coverage simply on its primary network and most days will see the following schedule.

  • Primetime: 8 p.m. – midnight ET/PT
  • Daytime: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. ET/PT
  • Late night: 12:35 a.m. – 1:35 a.m. ET/PT
  • Replays: 1:35 a.m. – 4:30 a.m. ET/PT

For those that want to watch and won’t necessarily have access to a TV, there are some options to live-stream the different events as reported by Variety.

From August 5 through August 21, there will be around 11,402 athletes from 208 countries taking part in the Olympic Games as reported by Olympic.org. This is even with 119 Russian athletes being sent home from the Rio games due to a blanket ban by the Word Anti-Doping Agency which was just recently reported by BBC.

Some may wonder just what sports these athletes will be competing in at the Olympics, and there are actually 39 of them. Rio 2016 has a list of all the sports that will bring about 311 different events over the next two weeks and they are all unique and competitive.

  • Archery
  • Artistic Gymnastics
  • Athletics (Track-and-Field)
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Boxing
  • Canoe Slalom
  • Canoe Sprint
  • Cycling – BMX
  • Cycling – Mountain Bike
  • Cycling – Road
  • Cycling – Track
  • Diving
  • Equestrian
  • Fencing
  • Football (Soccer)
  • Gold
  • Handball
  • Hockey
  • Judo
  • Marathon Swimming
  • Modern Pentathlon
  • Rhythmic Gymnastics
  • Rowing
  • Rugby Sevens
  • Sailing
  • Shooting
  • Swimming
  • Synchronized Swimming
  • Table Tennis
  • Taekwondo
  • Tennis
  • Trampoline Gymnastics
  • Triathlon
  • Volleyball
  • Water Polo
  • Weightlifting
  • Wrestling

Anything is possible to happen in the Olympics and that is why fans around the world should watch and enjoy as many events as possible. There could be a gold medal won by an underdog. A perfect score could occur for a dive or floor routine. There may also be a moment that will never be forgotten.

The Olympic Games only happen once every four years and this one event could be what many of these athletes train and live for. It may be their only opportunity to represent Sweden or Team USA or Samoa for their country and achieve the ultimate goal of a gold medal.

With a number of channels and so many hours of coverage, it will always be possible to catch a game or sporting event over the next two weeks.

The 2016 Rio Olympics are finally here and it’s time to binge-watch basketball, swimming, archery, track-and-field, and so much more. The NBC family of networks and channels will air plenty of coverage so you can enjoy the games for more than two solid weeks. Knowing the schedule of preliminary rounds and medal events is a must so you can cheer for your favorite countries and encourage them to the gold.

[Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]