– After 3:5 against top nation Canada, the next task for the German national ice hockey team at the World Cup in Finland is as follows: against Olympic bronze medalist Slovakia, the first victory is to come.
At the same time with self-criticism and confidence, the Germany national ice hockey team is going to act second after an early loss against record champions Canada at the World Cup in Finland.
The selection of national coach Tony Soderholm is required again today in Helsinki (7.20pm / Sport1 & Magentasport) against Olympic bronze medalist Slovakia, just a day after a 3:5 against the North American NHL ensemble. Two of the best German players, young NHL professionals Moritz Seder and Tim Stutzl, were self-critical even after a lost start.
“I think our experienced players have to hold themselves a little bit accountable. We just have to lead the team with more dominance,” said the top defender, Cedar. The first of seven group games on the way to the quarterfinals was “rather mixed”, he summarized:
“There were some plays I wasn’t happy with.” NHL striker Stutzl of the Ottawa Senators summed it up: “We can still improve as the tournament progresses.” Unlike the World Cup, no NHL professional took part in the Olympic Games in Beijing.
character and morals were right
Three months ago, the 2018 Olympic silver medalist had started the tournament with a 1:5 loss against Canada. This was the beginning of a disappointing appearance. This time the team of national coach Tony Soderholm made a better impression. But the Finnish coach also warned: “One of the dangers in tournaments is believing that you’re going the way you played the last game,” the 44-year-old responded with how courageous the final third gave: “If you think it’s going to go on like this, you have a problem. We need experience for that.”
Unlike Beijing, the character and morale were right this time against a stronger Canada. After 0:2 in the first period, Underdog came back thanks to Mark Michaelis from the second-rate North American AHL (28th). And meanwhile, even after a crucial 1:5 deficit, the 2021 World Cup semifinalists did not give up and improved the result thanks to goals from Adler Mannheim and Cedar (53rd) by Mathias Plachta (42nd). The star defender scored three points with one goal and two assists, with Stutzl scoring two goals.
Slovak more demanding opponents
“Beijing was a tough tournament. We’re all glad it’s over,” captain Moritz Müller looked back: “It’s a new tournament, a new team. At the Olympics we were a little overwhelmed from the start.”
The Olympic tournament ended with a poor performance, losing 4–0 to Slovakia. Fourth place in the World Cup from Riga was eliminated before the quarter-finals. “The Slovaks won the bronze medal at the Olympics. We all saw what they did there,” warned former NHL professional Korbinian Holzer before the second act.
The Slovaks started the tournament with a 4–2 win over Outer France. “They are a very strong team. They are very compact defensively. I think it will be a similar game,” Holzer said. “We definitely want to win.”
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