In Sports News from the past week: Czech Davis Cup team will play the Netherlands in the first round next season; Sparta Prague is at the top of the chart in Gambrinus Liga; Striker Libo Kozák secures victory for Aston Villa; Hockey Liberec beats Sparta 6:5; Simona Baumrtová has been invited to participate in the All-Star European team at the Duel in Pool event in Glasgow.
Trainer of the national hockey team, Alois Hadamczik, has released the list of possible players for the team that will be going to the Sochi Olympic games. The list has 67 names, most of whom are players for the NHL. Among the candidates are Jaromír Jágr, Petr Nedvěd and the goalkeeper Tomáš Vokoun. The final list of 25 players who will be heading to Sochi will be made public at the latest on 13 January. The Czech team will be playing in the first match of the Olympics against Sweden.
The Prague-based KHL club Lev Praha have signed the Finnish forward Niko Kapanen, Finland’s paper Ilta-Sanomat reported. The 35-year-old Kapanen, who spent his last season in Kazan in the KHL, played nearly 400 games in the NHL for Dallas, Atlanta and Phoenix. He also won the gold medal with the Finnish national team at the 2011 World Championships. He has become the sixth Finnish player to join Lev Praha ahead of the upcoming season.
Vladimír Růžička has signed a new three-year contract extension as coach of Slavia Prague ice hockey club, it said in a statement on its website. Růžička, who is 50, has been Slavia’s coach for 13 years, leading them to two Extraliga titles, and also holds the position of sporting manager at the club. As a player he captained the Czech team that took Olympic gold in Nagano in 1998, while he managed the national side to two World Championship titles.
The ice hockey star Jaromír Jágr, who is 41, has said he may play for the Czech Republic at next year’s Winter Olympics in Russia’s Sochi. However, the website iSport.cz quoted Jágr as saying he would only go to the Games if the coach wants him and he feels that he ranks among the best Czech players; he said he did not want anybody to believe he was only called up because of his name. The right wing, who was part of the Czech team that won Olympic gold at Nagano in 1998, recently joined the NHL club the New Jersey Devils.
The veteran Czech ice hockey star Jaromír Jágr is set to sign a new one-year contract with the New Jersey Devils, ESPN reported. The Devils would be the seventh different NHL club for the right wing, who is 41 and is regarded as perhaps the greatest Czech player of all time. Jágr has notched up 681 goals in the league since joining his first NHL club, Pittsburgh Penguins, in 1990–1991.
Czech hockey forward Patrik Eliáš has signed a three-year contract with the New Jersey Devils in the NHL, the club where he spent the last 17 seasons. Eliáš said in a statement he was excited to be back with New Jersey, and felt special to be a member of one organization his entire career. He is set to earn 16.5 million US dollars over the next three years; his previous, seven-year contract with the Devils expired earlier this year. The 37-year-old Czech has appeared in 1090 games for the New Jersey Devils, winning the Stanley Cup in 2002 and 2003.
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