In Sports News this Monday: Czechs exit ice hockey U20 worlds after 7:0 loss to US – coach says fifth place reflects team’s abilities; new club hockey attendance record set at temporary outdoor arena in Brno; Jágr helps Florida extend streak; Kozák finally returns to Premier League action; and funeral of Pavel Srníček held in Ostrava.
In hockey, Czech star forward Jaromír Jágr scored two goals for the
Panthers on Sunday night in the team’s win over the Minnesota Wild. The
final score was 2:1. The win was the Panthers’ ninth straight; the team
is now first in the Atlantic Division on 50 points, three ahead of Montreal
with a game in hand. Overall, the Florida Panthers are fourth in the
league. The 43-year-old Jágr has 13 goals this season and 735 in his NHL
career. He is six behind Brett Hull for third on the all-time list.
On Saturday, meanwhile, the Montreal Canadiens won their Winter Classic against the Boston Bruins by the lopsided score of 5:1. Tomáš Plekanec earned points for two assists.
In the Under 20 Ice Hockey world championships, the Czech team have been knocked out in the quarterfinals by the US. The Czechs were defeated by a wide 7:0 by a much more clinical opponent in front of goal. The Czech coach admitted the plan to try to hold the US to zero and hit them on the break failed. US player Austin Matthews racked up a hat-trick. The Czech team finishes fifth overall. The US go on to face Russia in the semi-final. The other tie matches Sweden and Finland.
In ice hockey, at the Under 20 world championships hosted by Finland, the Czech team lost against Finland 4:5 in a dramatic encounter on Thursday night. The loss means the Czechs ended third in their group and will face the US in the series of quarterfinals to be played on Saturday. Czech coach Jakub Petr pointed out the strength of the Finns on power plays with two of their five goals coming when they had a numerical advantage on the ice.
Czech hockey forward Tomáš Plekanec ended a 21-game scoring drought and his club Montreal Canadiens snapped a six-game losing streak on Monday against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Plekanec took full advantage in the first period after being set up nicely by P.K. Subban and made no mistake to put the goal past goalie Ben Bishop. The tightly-fought game came down to penalty shots, which the Habs won. The final score was 4:3. Tomáš Plekanec is second on points among Czech players in the NHL, behind Boston’s David Krejčí.
The Czech junior hockey team defeated Slovakia at the world juniors in Helsinki on Monday, returning a defeat they suffered at the hands of the Slovaks last year in the quarterfinals. The opening goal was scored by David Pastrňák and the second by Dominik Lakatoš. The match was the Czechs’s second in their group; they lost their opening game against Russia in penalty shots.
The Florida Panthers continued their winning streak on Tuesday night edging Ottawa by a score of 2:1 in a game that came down to penalty shots. Star Czech player Jaromír Jágr, who recently moved into fourth place on the NHL all-time scoring list, had a breakaway in the final minute of OT but could not capitalize. Earlier in the game, he picked up an assist but also had four of his front teeth knocked out by a high stick by Ottawa forward Alex Chiasson. There was no penalty on the play. News websites noted that the Czech hockey legend handled the situation with grace and humour, patting Chiasson on the head and later tweeting that he needed new teeth for Christmas to make it easier to eat.
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