With Olympic participants Dominic Kahn, Daniel Pieta and Fabio Wagner but five debutants, national ice hockey coach Tony Soderholm begins preparations for the World Cup. The 24 players called by the Finn for international matches on Thursday (5 pm) and Friday (3 pm) in Chomutov against the Czech Republic include veterans and newcomers Nikita Kvape, Justin Volek (both Krefeld Penguins), Alexander Karachun (both). Schweninger Wild Wings), Julian Napervnik (Minnesota State University) and Tim Fleischer (Nuremberg Ice Tigers).
Söderholm brought three compatriots into the coaching team for the World Cup in Finland: Finnish record national player and former world champion Raimo Helminen, and Petri Vakiparta, head coach of second division club Lausitzer Fuchse. Ilpo Kauhanen (48) is the goalkeeping coach again, the new video coach is Eric Allenz (University of Vermont). “Initially it is important for me that we have international experience in the coaching team,” the national coach said.
After the Czech Republic, the games will be held in Rosenheim.
The Games in the Czech Republic will be followed by four short training camps and games in Rosenheim (19–23 April), Dresden (26–30 April) and Schwenningen (5–8 May). Then the playoffs of the German Ice Hockey League (DEL) and national players from the NHL must join the team.
Canada, Switzerland, Slovakia, Denmark, Kazakhstan, Italy and France are the preliminary round rivals in the World Cup (May 13 to 29).
Teams for the First World Cup Preparatory Games:
Goalkeeper: Andy Janik (Iserlohn Roosters), Nikita Kwap (Krefeld Penguins), Niklas Truttle (Nuremberg Ice Tigers)
Defender: Torsten Ankert (Iserlohn Roosters), Tim Bender (Nuremberg Ice Tigers), Tobias Föhrler (HC Ambari-Pieta/Switzerland), Leon Huttl, Fabio Wagner (both ERC Ingolstadt), Johannes Huss (Schwenninger Wild Wings), Luka Münzenberger Vermont/USA ), John Rogel (Augsburg Panthers)
Striker: Alexander Blank, Lauryn Braun, Justin Volek (all Krefeld Pinguins), Tim Fleischer, Daniel Schmolz (both Nuremberg Ice Tigers), Mirko Hofflin, Daniel Pieta, Samuel Soramiz (all ERC Ingolstadt), Taro Gentsch (Iserlohn roster), Dominic Kahun ( Sc Bern/Switzerland), Alexander Karachun, Daniel Pfengt (both Schweininger Wild Wings), Julian Napravnik (Minnesota State University/USA).
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