Friday, April 20, 2007

Kopitar leads the way for Slovenia

Slovenia is returning to the premier level of international men's hockey.

Anze Kopitar of the NHL's Los Angeles Kings set up four goals during a 7-1 win over Japan at the IIHF's Division 1 tournament in Ljubljana on Thursday, earning the host country a berth in the 2008 world championship in Halifax and Quebec.
Just as Alex Ovechkin is going to get a chance to shine in front of his home country in the world championship beginning next week, so, too, is Kopitar having the time of his life at the Group B portion of the Division 1 tournament, being held in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Not surprisingly given he's the only NHL talent taking part, Kopitar leads the entire tournament in scoring with 12 points in four games, all Slovene wins against the likes of Romania (10-0), Hungary (4-1), Britain (4-0) and Japan (7-1).

The Group A series, meanwhile, is being held in Qiqihar, China, of all places, and Saturday's final game between France and Kazakhstan will determine who advances from that pool. You have to wonder what the attendance has been like in this northern region of China given the host team has lost all four games by a combined score of 36-5.

The top division tournament begins next Friday (April 27) in Moscow.

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3 Comments:

At 3:32 PM, April 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

James, it's Britian or the UK not England... PS I know your busy, but I really enjoyed the style of your playoff coverage last year, any chance of the format coming back?

 
At 4:35 PM, April 20, 2007, Blogger James Mirtle said...

Maybe for the Conference finals, or in some form that will be less time-consuming.

To be honest, I've worked so much that I haven't seen nearly as many games as in past years.

 
At 12:44 PM, April 21, 2007, Blogger teebs said...

Kopitar is such an exciting player to watch, I really wish the Canucks had not passed on him for Bourdon.

I hope Luc develops into the next Jovanovski or passing on Anze will look like a huge mistake.

 

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