Pavel Bárta, the spokesman for the Czech Ice Hockey Association, is a former hockey journalist and author with more than 20 years experience. His most recent book covers everything from the 1920s in Czech hockey to the Olympics, including the Czechs’ famous gold win at Nagano ten years ago. In this edition of One on One: a look back at that tournament as well as Pavel Bárta’s early career. When we met at his Prague office recently, the former Bruins fan admitted to a lifelong fascination with North America’s NHL and he began by telling me what it
In today’s Sports News: the Czech football Gambrinus Liga restarts after the winter break; Slavia Prague lose to Tottenham Hotspur in the UEFA Cup, a cross-country skiing World Cup event takes place in Liberec, with Czech Lukáš Bauer reaching the podium; and the Czech hockey Extraliga’s regular season is almost over.
In tennis, the Czech Republic have booked a safe passage to the Davis Cup quarterfinals by beating Belgium; cross-country star Lukáš Bauer wins classic 15 km to add to commanding lead in World Cup standings; Czechs finish last in Euro Hockey Tour; a TV crew is robbed during World Cup ski jumping event.
In National Hockey League action on Thursday Václav Prospal scored the
overtime winner, lifting Tampa Bay 2:1 over the Nashville Predators. He
scored in the first minute of overtime; the goal is Prospal’s 23rd this
season. The České Budějovice native was also named the game‘s first
In other action, the Montreal Canadiens’ Tomáš Plekanec notched up a goal and an assist in a 4:2 loss to Toronto. Plekanec is one point ahead of Prospal as the most productive Czech player in the NHL. Robert Lang and Martin Havlát helped the Chicago Black Hawks defeat the Calgary Flames 3:1. Lang scored twice in the game, while Havlát racked up one assist.
The 2008/2009 National Hockey League season will open in Prague and Stockholm next October. While the Swedish capital will see two games between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Ottawa Senators, hockey fans in Prague are in for a one-off treat. Jaromír Jágr, the most brilliant Czech star in the NHL and the captain of the New York Rangers, will lead his team in two matches against Tampa Bay at Prague’s Sazka Arena.
Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Tomáš Kaberle helped Eastern Conference
All-Stars defeat the West in the National Hockey League’s Superskills
competition in Atlanta on Saturday. Kaberle won the Most Accurate Shooter
category, hitting all four targets in the first round. In doing so he
matching the accuracy standard set by defenseman Ray Bourque in 1992 and
1993, equalled by Mark Messier in 1996 and Jeremy Roenick in 2004. In all,
Kaberle hit eight of nine targets, making him the league’s top
Sunday will see the All-Star Game between the Eastern and Western Conferences take place and Kaberle but also Czech goalie Tomáš Vokoun are on the roster.
The NHL has confirmed that the New York Rangers and the Tampa Bay Lightening will start their 2008/09 seasons in the Czech Republic, playing back-to-back games in Prague. The news was announced by National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman on Saturday. Mr Bettman expressed satisfaction that hockey fans abroad would be able to see the NHL game up close. The New York Rangers are home to a number of well-known Czech players, including star forward Jaromír Jágr. The Prague games, which will take place on October 4 and 5 at Sazka Arena, are not the only ones scheduled in Europe: on the same days the Ottawa Senators will face the Pittsburgh Penguins in Stockholm.
In hockey: the NHL’s All-Star Game between the Eastern and Western Conferences is set to take place on Sunday, with two Czech players on the Eastern conference roster. They are Tomáš Kabrle, defenseman for the Toronto Maple Leafs and goalie Tomáš Vokoun, who plays for the Florida Panthers. The All-Star Game has a long tradition in the NHL; last year the showcase match was won by the West by a score of 12:9.
In hockey action on Thursday in the NHL Czech forward Radim Vrbata notched
a hat trick to lead his team Phoenix over the Nashville Predators 4:3 in
overtime. Vrbata scored all three goals in regular time, and also assisted
on the winner in OT by Czech defender Zbyněk Michálek. The hat trick is
Vrbata’s career third in the NHL.
In other games: Michal Rozsíval helped his New York Rangers defeat Atlanta 2:1, scoring once and earning an assist. New Jersey Devil Patrik Eliáš scored twice against Montreal, but his team still lost to the Habs 4:3.
In NHL ice hockey action on Thursday Czech goalie Dominik Hašek cam through the winner in a match between his Detroit Red Wings and the Vancouver Canucks. During the game, Hašek turned away 26 shots, while his counterpart for the Canucks, Roberto Luongo stopped 47. With the game tied 2:2 and no goals in OT, the game went to a penalty shootout, which was won by Detroit. The Red Wings continue to top the National League.
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