Tuesday, May 03, 2005


World Championships: Russland ist ein Schönest Land

So, this is what it's like to kiss your sister...

Slovakia 3 - Russia 3

The Slovaks had the lead for most of the game, but were outshot 31-21 and eventually lost the lead on a goal by Viktor Kozlov.

"At least it wasn't a loss" seems to be the attitude of Slovak coach Frantisek Hossa.

"The first half of the game was ours and the second half belonged to the Russians, so I guess the tie is justice," said Slovak Head Coach Frantisek Hossa.
Full marks for frankness, and zero marks for inspiring the troops. A little less 'ho-hum' mmm-k?

Russian coach Vladimir Krikunov was more fiesty with his post-game comments.
"The character of the team and their will to come back prove so-called experts wrong that we were not a real team, but a bunch of stars."
I'm not sure which experts 'Creaky' is talking about, since Russia has fewer stars than ever.

Vitali Proshkin, Denis Denisov, Ivan Nepryaev, Vladimir Antipov, Alexander Ryazantsev, and Sergei Zvyagin aren't exactly household names outside of Russia. If there is a 'star-studded' roster in this tournament, it doesn't hail from Russia.

How do the Slovak fans feel? Read between the lines of Zdeno Chara's post-game quote:
"It was very hard to give up a goal in the final minutes when you've been defending the lead for almost the whole game," said Slovak defenseman Zdeno Chara. "But it's still a good result against a team like Russia."
Translation: Just like at the World Cup, where we got our asses handed to us, we're sitting back and playing like a shy girl at her first school dance. It's amazing we didn't lose, considering how we're playing 'not-to-lose', rather than 'to win'.

Canada up 3-0 over Slovenia this morning after 1 period. My 9-0 prediction is 1/3 on the way to becoming reality. I know, I really went out on a limb :)

Over in the WHL, the finals are almost set. The Kelowna Rockets could make it 3 straight Memorial Cup appearances. The Rockets took out the Kootenay Ice in 6 games, and they await the winner of the Prince Albert Raiders/Brandon Wheat Kings Game 7 victor.

Looking at the Playoff scoring race, we can see the Wheat Kings powerful 1st line is carrying the team with the top 3 point totals.

Eric Fehr 18GP 14-14-28PTS
Ryan Stone 18GP 4-22-26PTS
Lance Monych 18GP 15-7-22PTS

When did toughster Ryan Stone become the 2nd coming of Adam Oates?

Another player I'd like to highlight is Slovakia's Martin Sagat (no relation to the Street Fighter Thai Boxer), another product of the Dukla Trencin hockey factory.

After being selected by the Toronto Maple Leafs in Round 3 (#91 overall) in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, Sagat came over to the WHL and has adapted very well to the tough defensive style of hockey that we have out west.

Sagat is a strong and tall winger, who works hard and dishes the puck effectively. While sparky Nigel Dawes gets the attention, Sagat actually led the Ice in playoff scoring with 8 goals and 14 assists in 16 games (4th overall in playoff scoring) while wearing the Alternate Captain's 'A'. Leafs fans should be pleased with the way Sagat transitioned himself to NHL-style hockey. Sagat can be a good 2nd or 3rd line winger in the NHL depending on how he continues to progress.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?