Archive for Germany national team

Canada 4:2 Germany


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Despite holding a two-goal advantage as the halfway mark of the contest approached, a questionable decision to change goaltenders and a string of undisciplined penalties conspired to undo the host nation as always proud Canada rallied to register a 4-2 triumph over Germany on the final day of the 2014 Deutschland Cup international tournament in Munich.

Even though the players representing nine-time Olympic gold medalist Canada at the Olymia-Eisstadion in Bavaria are certainly not the very best that the North American country actually has to offer, one still could have easily surmised that, after consecutive losses to Slovakia and Switzerland at this 2014 Deutschland Cup, national pride and professional experience would see to it that this particular team under the direction of Eisbaeren Berlin trainer Jeff Tomlinson were always going to be extremely difficult to beat on the third and final day of the competition.

Canada had much better of the play for the first eight minutes or so but found Germany netminder Dennis Endras of Adler Mannheim, the somewhat smallish shot-stopper who was named the Best Goaltender at the 2010 IIHF World Championships but has been out of favor for the past couple of seasons, to be in top notch form. Buoyed by reliable play between the pipes, the Germans skated the lead a little over thirteen minutes in when a long wrist shot from defenseman Denis Reul, the 25-year-old Adler Mannheimer who was the fifth round choice (# 130 overall) of the Boston Bruins at the 2007 National Hockey League Draft, eluded veteran Canada goaltender Chris Mason of German elite league club Augsburg Panthers, the 38-year-old with 317 games worth of NHL experience on his resume. In front of the net to provide a critical screen was Germany center Kai Hospelt of Adler Mannheim, the 29-year-old Olympic veteran who was the seventh round selection (# 216 overall) of the San Jose Sharks at the 2003 NHL Draft and has appeared at six major international tournaments (40 ga, 4 go, 16 pts) in his career.

It was the first international goal ever scored by Reul, who has represented Germany at the IIHF World Championships three times (14 ga, 0 go, 0 pts) in his career already.

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Germany goaltender Dennis Endras (44), the experienced national team veteran who has played 20 games (2.78 avg, .906 svpct) at the annual IIHF World Championships over the course of his career, smothers the puck during the game against traditional international powerhouse Canada on the final day of competition at the 2014 Deutschland Cup in Munich.
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As the first intermission neared, the Canadians found themselves with two players sitting in the penalty box and the host nation was effectively able to capitalize. Germany captain Michael Wolf of hometown EHC Red Bull Munich, the 33-year-old Olympic veteran who has skated at seven major international tournaments (45 ga, 11 go, 21 pts) during his tenure, started the movement by passing the puck to Patrick Hager of ERC Ingolstadt behind the net. Then, the 26-year-old left wing quickly stepped out in front and stuffed a backhander past the Canadian custodian Mason to give Deutschland a 2-0 lead with a little more than two and a half minutes left in the first period.

The first half of the second period was far more even than the opening session had been but the Germans certainly did need a few more fine saves from Endras, the 29-year-old who, in late December of 2012, had an excellent outing when Adler Mannheim upended Canada 2-1 at the annual Spengler Cup holiday tournament held in Davos, Switzlerand. Then, perhaps because the host had already clinched this 2014 Deutschland Cup title by winning its first two games against Switzerland and Slovakia, Germany national team trainer Pat Cortina decided to rotate his goaltenders. It was a curious move more commonly associated with a Testspiel (an exhibition contest) as compared to a tournament game.

And so, at the 29:30 mark of the contest, off the bench ice cold and with one rather short stoppage of play to get ‘ready’ came Timo Pielmeier of ERC Ingolstadt, the 25-year-old who had one rather dreadful appearance (7.50 avg, .583 svpct) for the Anaheim Ducks during the 2010/11 NHL season in three years of North American professional hockey; Pielmeier, who had performed admirably in Germany’s 2-1 victory over Slovakia the day before, was making just his fourth-ever appearance in the national team colors.

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Faced with the prospect of losing all three games at this 2014 Deutschland Cup and now having seen the backup goaltender sent out onto the ice, the prideful Canadians obviously concluded that they needed to step up their game immediately. Barely six minutes had come off the scoreboard clock since the arrival of Pielmeier when Canada sped down the right flank in the German zone on two-on-one break. Bud Holloway of Swiss Nationalliga A side SC Bern, the 26-year-old winger who was the third round pick (# 86 overall) of the Los Angeles Kings at the 2006 NHL Draft, squared the puck beautifully into the path of charging Hamburg Freezers right wing Kevin Clark, the 26-year-old out of the University of Alaska – Anchorage who currently leads the Deutsche Eishockey League with 13 goals in 16 games this season after notching 30 goals and 68 points in 51 D.E.L. games for Krefeld Pinguine last term.

With time in the second period almost expired, inexperienced Germany defenseman Florian Kettemer of EHC Red Bull Munich, the 28-year-old former Adler Mannheim blueliner who has never appeared at a major internatonal tournament, was escorted to the penalty box and the Canadians took their chance rather well immediately. Highly experienced Canada captain Steven Reinprecht of Nuremberg Ice Tigers, the aging 38-year-old former Wisconsin Badgers center who skated in 596 NHL games and won the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche in 2001 before winning a gold medal for his country at the 2003 IIHF World Championships, sent a picturesque cross-ice pass from the bottom of the right faceoff circle over to Holloway in the left faceoff circle. The former Los Angeles farmhand who has spent the past three winters with AIK Skelleftea in the Swedish elite league after totaling 28 goals and 61 points in 78 games for the Manchester Monarchs during the 2010/11 American Hockey League campaign had no trouble hitting the back of the virtually wide-open net.

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The Canadians had obviously gained momentum from its strong finish to the middle frame but, at the outset of the final period, the Germans made it clear they were not enamored with the idea of a loss in their final tournament game and remained on even footing for the first thirteen minutes or so. Germany were spending too much time in the sin bin, however, and the visit by Kettemer that gave Canada its second power play opportunity of the game proved to be costly. This because the influential Reinprecht, who was loaned to Adler Mannheim for the remainder of the season by the NHL’s Florida Panthers in January of 2011, blasted his one-time shot from between the top of the two faceoff circles past the German goaltender Pielmeier to give the Canadians their very first lead of the game at the 53:52 mark.

The Germans made an effort to get back on level terms but Mason, the experienced veteran who has been to the annual IIHF World Championships with the national team of Canada four times (11 ga) in his productive career which includes both a gold medal (2007) and a silver medal (2009) won at the annual IIHF affair. Mason had been a hard luck loser for Canada after being lifted in favor of a sixth attacker at the end of the previous day’s clash with Switzerland, it should be remembered. Brandon Buck, the 26-year-old center who to transferred to German D.E.L. club ERC Ingolstadt from Swiss second division side HC Basel this past summer, put matters to rest soon enough for Canada by scoring an empty net goal.

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November 9, 2014
Deutschland Cup
Olympia-Eisstadion … Munich, Germany
Attendance : 6,000

Canada 4 – Germany 2

13:12 … GER – Reul (Oppenheimer, Hospelt)
17:19 … GER – Hager (Wolf, Hoerdler) – ppg
35:22 … CAN – Clark (Holloway)
38:53 … CAN – Holloway (Reinprecht, Regehr) – ppg
53:51 … CAN – Reinprecht (Pettinger) – ppg
59:05 … CAN – Buck (Clark) – eng

penalty minutes : GER 14 – CAN 10

Germany : Endras (Pielmeier 29:30) – Hoerdler, Ankert ; Reul, Kettemer ; Krueger, Akdag ; Wurm, Krupp – Gogulla, Ullmann, Reimer ; Pietta, Hospelt, Oppenheimer ; Hager, Plachta, Wolf ; Noebels, Seidenberg, Kink

Canada : Mason – DuPont, Pettinger ; Raymond, Regehr ; Festerling, Roy – Aulin, Ca. Abbott, Ch. Abbott ; Hamill, Dixon, Reddox ; Holloway, Buck, Clark ; James, Reinprecht, Greentree

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Germany 2:1 Slovakia


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A lightning-quick goal roughly one and a half minutes into the game and a second strike with forty seconds remaining to be played in the second period would prove to be all the offense that was required as host nation Germany ultimately held off late charging Slovakia 2-1 on the second day of the 2014 Deutschland Cup international tournament in Munich.

The Germans made a dream start when ERC Ingolstadt left wing Patrick Hager, the 26-year-old who has appeared at the annual IIHF World Championships three times (19 ga, 1 go, 2 pts) in his career, was the first to jump on a loose puck in front of the net after Slovakia goaltender Marek Ciliak, the 24-year-old from Czech elite league outfit HC Brno, left an inviting rebound. Hager beat Ciliak, who was making his senior international debut for Slovakia, low to the stick side to give Germany the 1-0 lead at the 1:39 mark of the opening period. Patrick Reimer, the 31-year-old Nuremberg Ice Tigers right wing recall to the national team for the first time in nineteen months, provided die Vorarbeit.

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Slovakia almost struck back right away in the third minute through Marek Viedensky, the 24-year-old right wing from Finnish elite league club HPK Hameenlinna who was the seventh round selection (# 189 overall) of the San Jose Sharks at the 2009 National Hockey League Draft before spending three seasons (120 ga, 15 go, 40 pts) skating with the Worcester Sharks in the American Hockey League. The Slovaks had no luck, though, as the shot from Viedensky, who scored three goals in seven games for Slovakia at the 2014 IIHF World Championships last spring, could only strike iron. Just two minutes later, though, Germany defenseman Justin Krueger from Swiss Nationlliga A side SC Bern, the 28-year-old out of Cornell University who was the seventh round choice (# 213 overall) of the Carolina Hurricanes at the 2006 NHL Draft and skated two seasons in the AHL for the Charlotte Checkers, was also denied by the goal cage.

When not being bailed out by his goal posts, Timo Pielmeier of ERC Ingolstadt, the 25-year-old netminder who was selected in third round (# 83 overall) of the 2007 NHL Draft by the San Jose Sharks but only ever did make one disastrous appearance (7.50 avg, .583 svpct) for the Anaheim Ducks at North American hockey’s highest professional level, was busy giving a good account of himself between the German pipes. Very late in the second period, the Slovaks were able to get another puck past Pielmeier, who was making just his third-ever appearance for the national team, but were again thwarted by metal. This time it was Slovakia right wing Roman Rac, the 23-year-old from Czech Extraligia side HC Olomouc, who went without good fortune.

The second Pfostenschuss from Slovakia would prove to be extremely pivotal, then. With exactly 40 seconds left to be played in the second period, Germany notched a second goal when veteran center Christoph Ullmann of Adler Mannheim sent a very hopeful puck in on net from the boards on the extreme right wing. Thanks to an inadvertent deflection from Slovakia defenseman Radek Deyl, the 25-year-old from Czech club HC Karlovy Vary, the little black disc ended up behind Ciliak to give the 31-year-old Ullmann his 20th career goal on his 146th appearance for the national team of Germany.

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Reimer, the rejuvenated right wing who scored two goals during Germany’s 3-1 win over Alpine arch-rival Switzerland on the first day of this 2014 Deutschland Cup competition, drew his second assist of the game against Slovakia on Ullmann’s strike. Almost eight minutes into the third period, the speedy veteran who totaled 33 goals and 65 points in 50 Deutsche Eishockey Liga games for Nuremberg last season almost gave Germany was would have been a 3-0 lead over the Slovaks. But Reimer’s rising backhander only rang the crossbar.

With a little less than four and a half minutes remaining in regulation, the Slovaks hauled themselves back into serious contention when a long shot from out on the left wing by Adam Lapsansky, the 24-year-old from domestic side HC Kosice who also scored a goal during Slovakia’s 4-1 triumph over Canada in the opening game of the 2014 Deutschland Cup, found its way past the somewhat screened Germany custodian Pielmeier.

Seeking to capitalize on its own momentum, Slovakia ratcheted up the pressure and forced Pielmeier, who spent most of his three seasons of North American pro hockey playing in the third-tier East Coast Hockey League before signing with German second division club EV Landshut in the summer of 2012, into making a few more good saves. The Slovaks’ attack petered out towards the end, however and veteran trainer Vladmir Vujtek‘s side never really were able to pull Ciliak in favor of a sixth attacker. “The German goaltender was very strong and the reason why we only scored one goal today,” offered Vujtek to the media after the game in Munich.

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Germany goaltender Timo Pielmeier, who made 37 appearances (3.09 avg, .906 svpct) for the Syracuse Crunch during the 2010/11 American Hockey League season but spent the bulk of the following campaign with the Elmira Jackals of the East Coast Hockey League, makes a save against Slovakia during the 2014 Deutschland Cup in Munich.
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November 8, 2014
Deutschland Cup
Olympia-Eisstadion … Munich, Germany
Attendance : 5,700

Germany 2:1 Slovakia

01:39 … GER – Hager (Reimer)
39:20 … GER – Ullmann (Reimer, Gogulla)
55:37 … SVK – Lapsansky (Vandas)

penalty minutes : GER 8 – SVK 4

Germany : Pielmeier – Hoerdler, Ankert ; Reul, Goc ; Krueger, Akdag ; Krupp, Kettemer – Gogulla, Ullmann, Reimer ; Pietta, Hospelt, Oppenheimer ; Hager, Plachta, Wolf ; Noebels, Seidenberg, Kink

Slovakia : Ciliak – Valach, Mikus ; Svarny, Deyl ; Bokros, Kozak ; Janosik, Kotvan – Dravecky, Viedensky, Bakos ; Tomanek, J. Sykora, Marcinko ; Bortnak, Lapsansky, Vandas ; Dej, Lusnak, Rac

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Germany 3:1 Switzerland


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Two goals from a recalled veteran appearing for the national team for the first time in nineteen months and steady play between the pipes from an experienced goaltender who has been out of favor with the national team trainer the last couple of seasons lifted host Germany to a 3-1 triumph over traditional Alpine arch-rival Switzerland on the opening day of the 2014 Deutschland Cup international tournament in Munich.

Germany came out flying in the opening period and were able to generate a sustained offensive attack to completely dominate the Swiss in terms of getting shots on goal (18-7). All the pressure finally paid off for the hosts when Patrick Reimer of Nuremberg Ice Tigers, the 31-year-old right wing who was first appeared for the national team in the spring of 2005 but had not skated for Deutschland since the 2013 IIHF World Championships, shot the hosts to the lead nearly fifteen and a half minutes into the contest. Koelner Haie left winger Philipp Gogulla, the 27-year-old former Buffalo Sabres farmhand who has appeared at the annual IIHF World Championships seven times (46 ga, 4 go, 21 as) in his career, did the preparation work.

The Germans would have had an even larger lead in the first period if not for the fine work of Switzerland netminder Daniel Manzato, the 30-year-old veteran who was the fifth round choice (# 160 overall) of the Carolina Hurricanes and spent the 2008/09 season in the American Hockey League with the Albany River Rats (32 ga, 3.19 avg, .898 svpct) before returning to Europe. Former Philadelphia Flyers farmhand Marcel Noebels, the 22-year-old left wing who scored 16 goals in 95 AHL games for the Adirondack Phantoms before signing a contract with Eisbaeren Berlin this past October, and Thomas Oppenheimer, the 25-year-old Hamburg Freezers right wing who led Deutschland in scoring at the 2014 IIHF World Championships last spring, each had excellent opportunities to extend Deutschland’s advantage late in the first period but were denied by Manzato. Oppenheimer had been turned aside at point blank range by the Swiss goaltender just prior to Reimer’s opening strike, as well.

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Switzerland, who iced a very inexperienced squad stocked with numerous players who were on their international debut, equalized on the power play roughly five and a half minutes into the second period. Left wing Reto Suri of EV Zug, the 25-year-old Olympic veteran who has appeared for the Swiss at three major international tournaments (20 ga, 6 go, 11 pts) in his career, finished with aplomb after the Swiss had used a series of short passes to quickly move the puck around in the offensive zone. Linemates Romano Lemm of EHC Kloten, the 30-year-old Swiss captain and two-time Olympic veteran who has skated at nine major international events (55 ga, 8 go, 19 pts) in his career, and 21-year-old youngster Lino Martschini of EV Zug picked up the assists.

The Germans struck back less than three minutes later, though, also while skating with the man advantage as Reimer, who now counts 15 goals in 52 national team games for Deutschland in his career, made a hustling play to pounce on a loose puck in front of the net and chip the little black disc up and over the shoulder of the Swiss custodian Manzato. With Germany goaltender Dennis Endras of Adler Mannheim, the 29-year-old veteran who has appeared in 20 games (2.78 avg, .906 svpct) at the IIHF World Championships during his career, also displaying fine form on his return to the national team colors, the would be no way back for Switzerland. Oppenheimer added an empty net goal to seal the deal for Deutschland.

“The Germans played good. It was hard for us to win space. We had a lot of trouble in the faceoff circle,” stated first-year Switzerland national team trainer Glen Hanlon, the long-time National Hockey League goaltender and former head coach who was previously in charge of both Belarus (2004/05 & 2005/06, 2008/09, 2013/14) and Slovakia (2009/10 & 2010/11).

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November 7, 2014
Deutschland Cup
Olympia-Eisstadion … Munich, Germany
Attendance : 5,500

Germany 3:1 Switerland

15:23 … GER – Reimer (Gogulla, Ullmann)
25:36 … SWITZ – Suri (Martschini, Lemm) – ppg
28:22 … GER – Reimer (unassisted) – ppg
59:33 … GER – Oppenheimer (Pietta, Hoerdler) – eng

shots-on-goal : GER 36 – SWITZ 21

penalty minutes : SWITZ 10 – GER 6

Germany : Endras – Ankert, Hoerdler ; Goc, Reul ; Akdag, Krueger ; Kettemer, Krupp – Gogulla, Ullmann, Reimer ; Pietta, Hospelt, Oppenheimer ; Hager, Plachta, Wolf ; Noebels, Seidenberg, Kink

Switzerland : Manzato – Ramholt, Schlumpf ; Leeger, Untersander ; Kparghai, Kienzle ; Fischer, Haechler – Suri, Lemm, Martschini ; Bodenmann, Schaeppi, Walsky ; Scherwey, Froidevaux, Baltisberger ; Wieser, Haas, Bertschy

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Injury-Hit Germany Prepares To Host 2014 Deutschland Cup


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No fewer than five of the twenty-eight players originally named to the host squad for the 2014 Deutschland Cup by Germany national team trainer Pat Cortina are now injured and will not be able to participate in any of the games at the Olympia-Eisstadion in Munich this weekend.

The loss of defenseman Constantin Braun from Eisbaeren Berlin, the sixth round selection (# 164 overall) of the Los Angeles Kings at the 2006 National Hockey League Draft, is a big blow. The 26-year-old, who has represented Germany at three major international tournaments (23 ga, 0 go, 2 pts) in his career, was off to a fine start for the already injury-riddled capital city club with eleven points (two goals) in his first thirteen Deutsche Eishockey Liga games this season. But Braun has sustained cartilage damage in his ankle joint and will be out for the considerable period of ten months.

Eisbaeren Berlin captain Andre Rankel, the 29-year-old Olympic veteran and left wing who has appeared with Germany at eight major international tournaments (40 ga, 1 go, 5 pts) in his career, as well as Hamburg Freezers right wing Jerome Flaake, the 24-year-old who was nabbed in the fifth round (# 130 overall) of the 2008 NHL Draft by the Toronto Maple Leafs and had a career year last term with 25 goals in 50 D.E.L. regular season games, are also both now unavailable on account of injury.

Germany will soldier on and, as is usually the case at the international level, goaltending and defense will be critical elements for the host nation. Adler Mannheim shot-stopper Dennis Endras, the 29-year-old who made six appearances in the American Hockey League for the Houston Aeros before transferring to Finnish elite league club IFK Helsinki in late November of 2011, is easily the most experienced of the three German netminders on the 2014 Deutschland Cup roster. Endras was Germany’s number one at the annual IIHF World Championships from 2010 until 2012 but has never really been in favor since Cortina took charge — it is relevant to point out the it was, in fact, the Adler Mannheim goaltender who was between the pipes when the favored Germans suffered that damaging overtime loss to the underdog Italians on home ice in Bietigheim-Bissingen during the qualification tournament for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games.

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Deutschland netminder Dennis Endras (44) of Adler Mannheim has appeared in 20 games (2.78 avg, .906 svpct) at the annual IIHF World Championships in his career and was named the Best Goaltender by the IIHF Directorate as well as the All-Star backstop by the accredited media at the conclusion of the 2010 IIHF tournament that was held in Germany.
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Eisbaeren Berlin blueliner Frank Hoerdler (5’11″ 180 lbs), the 29-year-old who has been on Germany’s roster for the annual IIHF World Championships seven times (39 ga, 3 go, 8 pts) in his career, will be Deutschland’s most experienced defenseman at the tournament in Munich this weekend. Justin Krueger (6’3″ 205 lbs) of Swiss side SC Bern, the 28-year-old out of Cornell University who was the seventh round choice (# 213 overall) of the Carolina Hurricanes at the 2006 NHL Draft that spent two years in the AHL with the Charlotte Checkers, has appeared for Germany at the IIHF World Championships five times (33 ga, 1 go, 2 pts) in his career. Adler Mannheim’s Dennis Reul, the 25-year-old who was the fifth round pick (# 130 overall) of the Boston Bruins at the 2007 NHL Draft, is the Germans’ biggest defenseman (6’4″ 230 lbs).

Adler Mannheim defenseman Nikolai Goc (6’0 215 lbs), the 28-year-old whose older brother, Marcel, is now in his tenth season as a regular in the National Hockey League, also has skated for Germany at the IIHF World Championships five times (31 ga, 1 go, 4 pts) while Koelner Haie blueliner Torsten Ankert (6’2″ 220 lbs), the 26-year-old who has appeared at the last two IIHF World Championships, is another German defender who brings considerable size to the table.

EHC Red Bull Munich right wing Michael Wolf, the 33-year-old Olympic veteran who has appeared for Deutschland at seven major international tournaments (45 ga, 11 go, 21 pts) in his career, has been one of the most consistent producers for traditionally low-scoring Germany in recent years. Adler Mannheim center Christoph Ullmann, the experienced 31-year-old veteran who has suited up for Germany at the IIHF World Championships eight times (51 ga, 4 go, 18 pts) in his career, is a fine two-way pivot who also exhibits good leadership skills. Neither Wolf (dropped) nor Ullmann (injured) were in uniform for Germany during the unimpressive run at 2014 IIHF World Championships in Belarus last spring.

One player rediscovering his goal-scoring touch in the domestic league this fall is Philip Gogulla of Koelner Haie, the 27-year-old left wing who was chosen in the second round (# 48 overall) of the 2005 NHL Draft by the Buffalo Sabres and spent the entire 2009/10 season skating in the AHL for the Portland Pirates (76 ga, 15 go, 35 pts). The seasoned veteran has already appeared at the annual IIHF World Championships seven times (46 ga, 4 go, 21 as) in his career but was also left out of the German squad that traveled to Minsk last spring. Gogulla, who has skated in 125 games for the national team of Germany in his career, netted only five goals in 41 D.E.L. games all of last term for Koelner Haie but already counts five goals in just 16 D.E.L. games this fall.

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Germany right wing Thomas Oppenheimer (19), the Hamburg Freezers attacker who scored 21 goals in 52 D.E.L. games during the 2013/14 season, slips the puck past Kazakhstan goaltender Vitaly Yeremeyev of Kontinental Hockey League club Barys Astana, the aging 38-year-old veteran who once made four appearances (4.53 avg, .846 svpct) for the New York Rangers during the 2000/01 National Hockey League season, to net the decisive tally in the shootout phase during the preliminary round of the 2014 IIHF World Championships in Minsk, Belarus.
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Thomas Oppenheimer of Hamburg Freezers, the 25-year-old right wing who, on his debut at a major international tournament, led Germany in scoring with both four goals and six points in seven games at the 2014 IIHF World Championships, returns to the national team squad as does Adler Mannheim center Kai Hospelt, the 29-year-old Olympic veteran who was the seventh round selection (# 216 overall) of the San Jose Sharks at the 2003 NHL Draft and has appeared at six major international tournaments (40 ga, 4 go, 16 pts) in his career. Hospelt was the second-leading scorer with five points (two goals) for the Germans in Minsk at the annual IIHF affair last season. Marcus Kink of Adler Mannheim, the 29-year-old rambunctious left wing with the rather physical style of play, has skated for Germany at the IIHF World Championships the past four years (22 ga, 4 go, 6 pts) in a row now.

Patrick Reimer of Nuremberg Ice Tigers, the 31-year-old veteran right wing who turned out for Germany at the IIHF World Championships in both 2011 and 2012 (14 ga, 5 go, 8 pts), has been recalled to the national team by Cortina; the speedy Reimer can be an explosive threat on offense but is known to be unreliable defensively.

The youngest player on Cortina’s sqaud at the 2014 Deutschland Cup is Eisbaeren Berlin newcomer Marcel Noebels, the 22-year-old winger who dissolved his contract with the National Hockey League’s Philadelphia Flyers and fled North America this past October. Noebels, who has already appeared with Germany at both the 2013 & 2014 IIHF World Championships, has two goals and three points with a + 2 defensive rating in six D.E.L. games for Eisbaeren Berlin this fall. Another hope for the future is Marek Plachta of Adler Mannheim, the 23-year-old right wing who netted one goal in six games for Germany at the 2014 IIHF World Championships in Belarus last spring.

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Cortina Must Get Germany Results


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“These are very important years for German ice hockey, so the tournament is of great importance to us,” stated host national team trainer Pat Cortina on the eve of the 2014 Deutschland Cup being held at the Olympia-Eisstadion in Munich this weekend.

What Cortina did not say is that this particular season is a very important one for the 50-year-old native of Montreal, Quebec, who was previously the national team trainer for both Italy (2000/01 to 20002/03) as well as Hungary (2003/04 to 2009/10). This because the Deutsche Eishockey Bund’s contract with Germany’s third-year national team trainer expires after the 2015 IIHF World Championships to be played in the Czech Republic this spring. And Cortina’s overall record in charge of Deutschland, to be quite frank, has not been good.

The biggest stain on Cortina’s sheet is Germany’s failure to book its place for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, despite hosting the final qualification tournament involving neighbors Austria, Holland and Italy on home ice in Bietigheim-Bissingen. This national disaster marked the first time since 1924 that Germany did not participate in the men’s ice hockey tournament at the Olympics. Furthermore, Cortina’s national team had a terrible showing at the 2014 IIHF World Championships in Belarus last spring — the Germans won only two of seven games while finishing seventh out of the eight teams in their preliminary round group in Minsk.

There is absolutely no question that the D.E.B. will not tolerate similar results coming out of the Czech Republic this coming spring.

Cortina’s tenure as that national team trainer of Germany started off well enough when the host nation triumphed at the annual Deutschland Cup in November of 2012. Only a few short months later, the wheels came off the hinges when Germany lost 2-1 in overtime to Italy in the Olympic qualification tournament at Bietigheim-Bissingen. The Germans could have made things right by defeating traditional arch-rival Austria in regulation on the final day of the competition, but Cortina’s troops could not win without the aid of another overtime session.

At the annual IIHF World Championships in the spring of 2013, the Germans finished fifth in the Helsinki-based preliminary round group after posting the record of two wins, one overtime win, three losses and one overtime loss. Cortina’s charges might have made the quarterfinal round with a win over the United States in their second-last contest but ended up being blanked 3-0 by the Americans. A 3-2 loss to Slovakia earlier in the tournament also proved to be rather regrettable.

At the 2014 World Championships last spring, Germany needed a shootout to overcome lowly Kazakhstan 2-1 and this proved to be a harbinger of things to come. Cortina’s team lost its last five games in Minsk on the trot after defeating Latvia 3-2. Although the Germans stayed with Switzerland (2-3) and the United States (4-5), the loss to host nation Belarus (2-5) was considerable.

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Leon Draisaitl Becomes Youngest German To Ever Score NHL Goal


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Still a full three days shy of his nineteenth birthday, German teenage phenomenon Leon Draisaitl became the youngest player born and raised in Deutschland to ever score a goal in the crack National Hockey League after tallying what proved to be the game-winner for the Edmonton Oilers against the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday night.

The third overall player chosen at the 2014 NHL Draft this past summer, the still 18-year-old Draisaitl was originally stopped at point blank range by Carolina netminder Anton Khudobin, the 28-year-old Russian journeyman who suddenly emerged to establish himself as the Hurricanes’ most reliable goaltender last season (36 ga, 2.30 avg, .926 svpct). Not to be denied, however, the former Prince Albert Raiders star who appeared in all seven games (1 go, 4 pts) for the senior national team of Germany at the 2014 IIHF World Championships last spring quickly snapped up his own rebound and smoothly went to the backhand. And so it came to be, on his eighth appearance in the vaunted National Hockey League for the history-rich Edmonton Oilers, youthful talent Leon Draisaitl had finally scored his very first professional goal.

The only other German player to have ever scored an NHL goal as a teenager previously was Marco Sturm, the long-lasting left wing who was the first round selection (# 21 overall) of the San Jose Sharks at the 1996 NHL Draft. Sturm notched his first NHL goal against the Chicago Black Hawks in early October of 1997 at the exact age of 19 years and 26 days.

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It is rather interesting that German teenage phenom Leon Draisaitl plays his professional hockey in the Canadian province of Alberta. This because it was in very same Canadian province that the father of the Edmonton Oilers’ first round pick (# 3 overall) at the 2014 NHL Draft this past summer first made his debut at a major international tournament when appearing for West Germany at the 1988 Winter Olympic Games hosted by the city of Calgary. Former ERC Mannheim and Koelner Haie center Peter Draisaitl, a three-time Olympian (’88, ’92, ’98), ultimately skated with the senior national team of Germany at eleven “majors” in his career and totaled 14 goals and 31 points in 73 games for Deutschland at those top shelf competitions.
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After skating in the Edmonton Oilers’s first eight games of this 2014/15 National Hockey League season, German rookie Profispieler Leon Draisaitl has totaled one goal and three points thus far :

GERMAN PRODUCTION IN FIRST NHL CAMPAIGN
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34 pts … 13 go … 63 ga …… Jochen Hecht, St. Louis Blues – 1999/00 *
30 pts … 10 go … 74 ga …… Marco Sturm, San Jose Sharks – 1997/98
29 pts ….. 5 go … 53 ga …… Uli Hiemer, New Jersey Devils – 1984/85
22 pts ….. 8 go … 81 ga …… Marcel Goc, San Jose Sharks – 2005/06 *
17 pts ….. 7 go … 48 ga …… Stefan Ustdorf, Washington Capitals – 1995/96

* Notes — as a 21-year-old rookie professional in North America, Hecht made three appearances in the National Hockey League for St. Louis during the 1998/99 season but spent almost all of that campaign skating in the American Hockey League with the Worcester IceCats … Goc was recalled by San Jose and participated in the 2004 NHL playoffs as a 20-year-old rookie but had spent that entire 2003/04 regular season turning out in the AHL on behalf of the Cleveland Barons.

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Germany center Leon Draisaitl (71), the 18-year-old who spent the season skating for the the Western Hockey League’s Prince Albert Raiders in Canadian junior system, shields the puck from Latvia right wing Ronalds Kenins of Swiss Nationalliga A side ZSC Lions in Zuerich during the Group B preliminary round game at the 2014 IIHF World Championships in Minsk, Belarus. The Germans defeated the Latvians 3-2 thanks, in part, to a goal by Philadelphia Flyers farmhand Marcel Noebels of the AHL’s Adirondack Phantoms and nineteen saves from Washington Capitals / Hershey Bears netminder Philipp Grubauer. The teenager Draisaitl was held off the scoresheet in this particular contest but later concluded the tournament by scoring one goal and adding two assists during Germany’s 5-4 loss to the United States at the Minsk Arena.

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Germany 3 – France 2 … (ot)


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A good piece of forechecking in the offensive zone from an experienced NHL veteran directly led to a game-winning goal by the national team captain scored barely a minute into the overtime session as resilient GERMANY edged neighboring rival FRANCE 3-2 on the final day of round robin competition at the 2013 IIHF World Championships in Finland.

Germany began the day with a reasonable chance of finishing fourth in the Helsinki group and earning a spot in the knockout round, accordingly, but Slovakia’s decisive victory over the United States soon eliminated that possibilty entirely. And the French, despite having celebrated a spectacular upset at the expense of Russia earlier in the tournament, also had no hope of a place in the playoffs going into its final contest. Nevertheless, still up for grabs at the Hartwall Arena were the bragging rights available to only one of the two neighboring countries.

Considering the Germans’ historical failure to qualify for the men’s ice hockey tournament at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games to be held in Russia next season, the last match with France did appear to carry significant weight with respect to the continued employment of PAT CORTINA as the national team trainer of DEUTSCHLAND.

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With a wide open net and less than two minutes having expired off the game clock, France right wing JULIEN DESROSIERS (24) of HC Rouen Dragons shoots the puck past Germany goaltender ROB ZEPP (72) of Eisbaeren Berlin on the power play during the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H match at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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Germany left wing ANDRE RANKEL (24) rams a French player into the boards at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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Germany captain CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF of the Buffalo Sabres greets NHL constituent and national team colleague MARCEL GOC (57) of the Florida Panthers after the 30-year-old defenseman scored an overtime goal to defeat France 3-2 on the final day of round robin competition in Group H of the 2013 IIHF World Championships at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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IIHF World Champinships
Group H – Helsinki, Finland
Hartwall Arena – attendance : 5,062
referees : Baluska (Slovakia) and Rieber (Switzerland)

GERMANY 3 – FRANCE 2 … (ot)

01:42 … FRA – Desrosiers (Besch, Y. Treille) – ppg
17:32 … GER – Ehrhoff (Ullmann, Greilinger) – ppg
34:57 … FRA – Roussel
41:24 … GER – Wolf (Hoerdler)
61:05 … GER – Ehrhoff (M. Goc)

shots-on-goal : GER 36 – FRA 29 … penalty minutes : FRA 24 – GER 4

GERMANY : Zepp – Ankert, Ehrhoff ; Baxmann, Hoerdler ; N. Goc, Mueller ; Krueger – Rankel, M. Goc, Schuetz ; Gogulla, Ullmann, Wolf ; Seidenberg, Kink, Tripp ; Greilinger, Hager, Mauer ; Pietta

FRANCE : Huet – Manavian, Auvitu ; Bachet, Hecquefeuille ; Janil, Besch ; Moisand – Y. Treille, Meunier, Desrosiers ; Fleury, Bellemare, S. Treille ; Henderson, Roussel, Da Costa ; Ritz, Raux, Bertrand

Notes — Not surprisingly, Germany captain CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF paced all of his team’s skaters by amassing 26:48 of total ice time … national team veteran CHRISTOPH ULLMANN of Adler Mannheim, the soon-to-be 30-year-old center who won six out of nine face-offs and was credited with four shots on goal against the French, led all German forwards with 19:14 total ice time.

France forward ANTHONY GUTTIG, the 24-year-old winger who began the season with Swedish second division club IK Mora and ended the campaign with third division side AIF Tranas, dressed but did not take even one single shift against Germany.

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MARCUS KINK of Adler Mannheim, captain CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres and goaltender ROB ZEPP of Eisbaeren Berlin

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Noebels – Gut Gemacht, Hatte Ich Gedacht


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Deutschland-Linksaussenspieler MARCEL NOEBELS (92) von Adirondack Phantoms kontrolliert den Puck in der Naehe von der Bande … kommt der amerikanische Stuermer BOBBY BUTLER (12) von Nashville Predators an.
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Steht auf. Macht schnell. Das Bully kommt in den fruehen Morgenstunden … An diesem Tag es war das Fruehstueck aus Finnland!

(Ich wohne nicht so weit von Philadelphia. Weniger als eine Stunde mit dem Auto. Sieben Stunden sind as Zeitunterschied zwischen Helsinki und die Stadt wo die Flyers der NHL laufen.)

Das amerikanische Eishockey-Mannschaft in Finnland ist bereits hellwach zu Beginn. Sie schlagen den Deutschen mit zwei Blitztore in den ersten fuenf Minuten. Immer sehr wichtig, weil Deutschland nie sehr viele Tore in einem Spiel treffen.

Deutschland haben ein paar guten Chancen waehrend einer Ueberzahl in dem zweiten Teil. Aber durch den beiden MICHAEL WOLF (Iserlohn Roosters) und PHILIPP GOGULLA (Koelner Haie) war kein Glueck gefunden. Fuer das ganze Spiel, hatte Deutschland dreizig Torschuesse aber nicht gefaehrlich waren die meisten … es ist richtig, dass mit grossen Disziplin vor dem Tor gespielt hat die USA-Verteidigung.

Doch noch, der junge deutsche Stuermer MARCEL NOEBELS (Adirondack Phantoms, zweiter Mannschaft der Philadelphia Flyers) beeindruckt mir. Noebels lief an der vierten Linie mit PATRICK HAGER (ERC Ingolstadt) und DANIEL PIETTA (Krefeld Pinguine). Einen dritten Erscheinen bei diesem Weltmeischaft-Turneir fuer den 21-Jaehrige aus Toenisvorst.

Noebels spielte gegen die Amerikaner nicht so schlecht, auf meiner Meinung. Das Tempo seiner Skating war gut und auch er war in seiner eigenen Zone verantwortlich. Die meisten der Gegner sind NHL-Profis, sondern Noebels zeigte, dass er auch spielen kann.

Weltmeisterschaft-Bericht von Deutschland-Stuermer MARCEL NOEBELS
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Finnland ……………….. 8:09 auf Eis … 1 Torschoss …… keine Gegentore
Slowakei ……………….. 2:48 auf Eis … 0 Torschuesse … keine Gegentore
Vereinigten Staaten … 13:18 auf Eis … 1 Torschoss …… keine Gegentore

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United States 3 – Germany 0


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In a meaningful match-up with enormous playoff implications for both sides, the self-starting Americans scored two goals inside the first five minutes and left their punchless opponents to chase a game which they never really looked very much like catching as the UNITED STATES shutout GERMANY 3-0 at the 2013 IIHF World Championships.

With just two more group games to be played by his team in the preliminary round robin based at Helsinki, Germany trainer PAT CORTINA decided to rest Eisbaeren Berlin goaltender ROB ZEPP, the native Canadian who kept the scoresheet clean against both Austria and Latvia on his last two outings in Finland, and bestowed a second start at these 2013 IIHF World Championships upon DENNIS ENDRAS, the snakebitten Adler Mannheim shot-stopper who had already had the misfortune of being stationed between the Deutschland pipes during the devastating Olympic qualification loss to Italy at Bietigheim-Bissingen back in February.

The United States staff, meanwhile, was disappointed with the overall performance of Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender BEN BISHOP, the 26-year-old University of Maine product who had surrendered five goals to Russia and two goals (on just 17 shots) to France earlier in the tournament. Therefore, the American head coach JOE SACCO elected to get a second look at JOHN GIBSON, the 19-year-old native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who just so happened to be named the Best Goaltender at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championships hosted by Russia this past winter. Gibson, who was a major factor as the United States garnered the gold medal at Ufa, spent the majority of the 2012/13 in the Canadian junior system with the Kitchener Rangers before making a solitary start for the professional Norfolk Admirals in the American Hockey League.

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Germany defensemen JUSTIN KRUEGER (3) of the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers and CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF (10) of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres can do nothing as United States left wing BOBBY BUTLER (12), the former University of New Hampshire captain who was traded this past April from the New Jersey Devils to the Nashville Predators, whacks the loose puck past Deutschland Torhueter DENNIS ENDRAS (44) of Adler Mannheim on the power play early in the first period of the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H contest at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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Germany right wing FELIX SCHUETZ of Koelner Haie took an undisciplined penalty for slashing only a minute and a half into the game at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki and the opportunistic Americans were more than happy to accept such a gift unconditionally. After controlling the puck effectively on the power play, United States defenseman JUSTIN FAULK of the Carolina Hurricanes launched a big slapshot from straightaway center point that could only catch his teammate, effectively stationed in front of the net next to Germany captain CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF of the Buffalo Sabres, on the back of the skate. Nevertheless, it was the American left wing BOBBY BUTLER who was able to react to the loose puck first and the Nashville Predators left wing wasted no time in sweeping the little black disc past the the German goaltender.

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United States captain PAUL STASTNY of the Colorado Avalanche prepares to shoot the puck past Germany goaltender DENNIS ENDRAS of Adler Mannheim, the 28-year-old veteran who spent the majority of the 2011/12 season on loan to Finnish elite league club IFK Helsinki from the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League, early in the first period of the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H match at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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The shell-shocked Germans were then left to look at the wrong end of a 2-0 scoreline roughly two and a half minutes later after two NHL veterans who had earned silver medals for the United States at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver combined to notch a well-deserved goal. Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman ERIK JOHNSON, the former University of Minnesota star whom the St. Louis Blues made the very first player selected at the 2006 NHL Draft, made an excellent play to pinch at the right point and then penetrate deep into the offensive zone before distributing the perfect pass to an unmarked Colorado Avalanche center PETER STASTNY, the one-time University of Denver pivot who skated with EHC Red Bull Munich (13 ga, 7 go, 18 pts) in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga during the NHL Lockout, in the slot. Endras did well to block the initial shot from Stastny but the experienced 27-year-old who has already contested 467 NHL games (135 go, 398 pts) in his career was able to collect the rebound and skillfully net his fourth goal in six games at this tournament.

Stastny, who has now represented the United States at four major international tournaments (31 ga, 15 go, 35 pts) thus far in his career, would ultimately go on to finish in second place on the 2013 IIHF World Championships scoring chart by totaling fifteen points after all ten of the Americans’ games.

Colorado Avalanche left wing AARON PALUSHAJ, the former University of Michigan product on his first-ever appearance at a major international tournament, had a glorious opportunity to put the traditionally low-scoring Germans in a difficult 3-0 hole with just over five minutes left in the opening period but lifted his backhander high and wide on the breakaway.

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The Russian referee keeps a sharp eye on proceedings as the backhander from breaking United States left wing AARON PALUSHAJ (17) of the Colorado Avalanche, the 27-year-old native of Northville, Michigan, who has managed to score just three goals from 66 NHL games in his career, sails high and wide of the net guarded by Germany goaltender DENNIS ENDRAS of Adler Mannheim in the first period of the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H contest at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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The Germans, as they had done in previous games at these 2013 IIHF World Championships so far, were able to regroup and go on the offensive somewhat themselves. The shots-on-goal finished even after one period at eleven for each side and would actually favor the Germans slightly (30-29) by the end of regulation time. For the most part, however, the Americans did well to force their opponents into shooting from low-percentage angles and were very diligent about clearing all rebounds in front of their teenaged netminder.

Even on the power play after Palushaj had been penalized for slashing in the second period, Germany would find no luck at all. Experienced right wing MICHAEL WOLF, the 32-year-old veteran who finished tied for third in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga with 23 goals for Iserlohn Roosters this past term, had a wonderful opportunity at the side of the net but could only strike the outside of the American net with his one-timer. Shortly thereafter, PHILIPP GOGULLA of Koelner Haie, the former Buffalo Sabres farmhand who had created the great chance for Wolf with a slick cross-ice pass, put the puck through the pads of the youthful United States goaltender Gibson but could not celebrate as the little black disc would stubbornly roll wide of the target.

A little over three and a half minutes on, the luckless Palushaj had yet another breakaway for the United States but, this time, was hacked from behind by the trailing Germany center PATRICK HAGER of ERC Ingolstadt. The Russian referees immediately signaled for a penalty shot to be awarded although, in the end, it would make no difference. Endras stood his ground and, yet again, the second round choice of the St. Louis Blues (# 44 overall) at the 2007 NHL Draft directed his attempt wide of the German net.

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United States left wing AARON PALUSHAJ (17) lifts his second period penalty shot high and wide of the cage protected by Germany netminder DENNIS ENDRAS of Adler Mannheim during the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H clash at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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The ambitious Hager genereated a coast-to-coast rush for the Germans on a four-on-four situation roughly eight and a half minutes into the final frame. A quick snap shot from between the circles even caught the United States backstop’s blocker just right in order to ricochet up and over the 19-year-old rookie. However, as was typical of the entire affair at the Hartwall Arena, the little black disc just would not bounce in Deutschland’s direction and was escorted from danger.

The Americans, meanwhile, hammered a final nail in the Germans’ proverbial coffin with nine and a half minutes remaining in the match. A blast from the left point by United States defenseman MATT HUNWICK of the Colorado Avalanche was successfully turned aside by Endras but Tampa Bay Lightning left wing NATE THOMPSON was still able to squeeze the puck between the legs of the Adler Mannheim goaltender. After skidding unmolested across the width of the goal crease, the little black disc was finally shot into the wide open net by lurking New Jersey Devils right wing STEPHEN GIONTA.

The 3-0 loss did not eliminate Deutschland from the quarterfinals at the 2013 IIHF World Championships outright, but the pointless result did mean that the Canadian-Italian trainer Cortina’s German contingent would not only have to defeat France in its final game, but also receive assistance from another nation in order to qualify for the medal round. Ironicially enough, it was the Americans, themselves, whom the Germans were counting now on. At the minimum, Cortina could still count on the fact that the United States still needed to triumph over Slovakia in order to finish on top of the Helsinki group.

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Germany center PATRICK HAGER (50) of ERC Ingolstadt pushes and shoves with United States left wing STEPHEN GIONTA, the 29-year-old Boston College product who skated in all 48 games (4 go, 14 pts) for the New Jersey Devils this past NHL season, during the 2013 IIHF World Championships – Group H contest at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.
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IIHF World Championships
Group H – Helsinki, Finland
Hartwall Arena – attendance : 11,057
referees – Bulanov (Russia) and Olenin (Russia)

UNITED STATES 3 – GERMANY 0

02:39 … USA – B. Butler (Faulk, Smith) – ppg
04:53 … USA – Stastny (Johnson)
51:27 … USA – Gionta (Thompson, Hunwick)

shots-on-goal : GER 30 – USA 29 … penalty minutes : USA 12 – GER 10

GERMANY : Endras – Ehrhoff, Hoerdler ; Ankert, Krueger ; Goc, Mueller ; Kohl – Greilinger, M. Goc, Schuetz ; Gogulla, Ullmann, Wolf ; Seidenberg, Kink, Tripp ; Noebels, Hager, Pietta

UNITED STATES : Gibson – Carle, Faulk ; Johnson, Hunwick ; Petry, C. Butler ; McBain – Smith, Stastny, Moss ; Gionta, Thompson, Carter ; B. Butler, LeBlanc, Stapleton ; Palushaj, Bjugstad, Kristo

NOTES — As has been the case of all six of his country’s contests at these 2013 IIHF World Championships in Helsinki thus far, captain CHRISTIAN EHRHOFF led all Germany skaters with 24:15 of time on the ice … Eisbaeren Berlin defenseman FRANK HOERDLER was the only other German skater to exceed twenty minutes (20:38) of deployment on the ice against the Americans while NHL legionnaire MARCEL GOC of the Florida Panthers topped all of Germany’s forwards (17:38).

Germany were forced to scratch a pair of players from current Deutsche Eishockey Liga champion Eisbaeren Berlin, defenseman JENS BAXMANN as well as club captain and left wing ANDRE RANKEL, on account of injury.

The United States formally registered center ALEX GALCHENYUK of the Montreal Canadiens with the IIHF tournament officials early in the morning on May 12, which made the 19-year-old who was the third overall player selected at the annual National Hockey League Draft in June of 2012 eligible to play against Germany later that day. Galchenyuk, whose father represented the national teams of both the old Union of Soviet Socialist Republics as well as Belarus, contributed two goals and eight points to the United States entry that won the gold medal at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championships hosted by Russia and then appeared in all 48 NHL games (9 go, 27 pts) for the Montreal Canadiens this term. Galchenyuk took part in the pre-game skate at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki but was a healthy scratch for the United States in their contest with Germany.

United States defenseman JUSTIN FAULK (Univ of Minnesota-Duluth) of the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes and newly-arrived Germany rearguard JUSTIN KRUEGER (Cornell Univ) spent the first half of this past 2012/13 campaign competing together as teammates on the Charlotte Checkers in the American Hockey League.

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United States defenseman CHRIS BUTLER (34) of the Calgary Flames, the experienced Denver University product who skated for Swedish second division club HK Karlskrona during the NHL Lockout last fall, and Germany center PATRICK HAGER (50) of ERC Ingolstadt, the 24-year-old making his third career appearance at a major international tournament, display the respective Player-Of-The-Game awards (as voted on by the two players’ teammates) at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.

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Zepp Glides Into German History Books


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Ever since KARL FRIESEN first appeared briefly with the New Jersey Devils in the National Hockey League almost three decades ago, there have been other Germany national team goaltenders with more impressive North American professional pedigrees than current Deutschland Torhueter ROB ZEPP of regining Deutsche Eishockey Liga champion Eisbaeren Berlin.

Two-time Germany Olympic veteran OLAF KOLZIG, for example, backstopped the Washington Capitals to the Finals of the 1998 Stanley Cup Playoffs and was presented with the Vezina Trophy as the National Hockey League’s best goaltender at the conclusion of the 1999/2000 campaign.

Although Zepp was drafted in the fourth round of the annual NHL Draft by two different NHL clubs (the Atlanta Thrashers in 1999 and the Carolina Hurricanes in 2001), the 31-year-old native of Newmarket, Ontario, never made so much as one single appearance in the vaunted National Hockey League in four seasons as a North American professional.

Nevertheless, it is the less recognized Zepp who has written his name into the history books by becoming the first German goaltender to register consecutive shutouts at a major international tournament in almost eighty years …

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Germany netminder DENNIS ENDRAS (44) tracks the puck as the Russian attackers storm the goal crease during the historic clash at the 2011 IIHF World Championships in Slovakia; fortified by thirty-one saves from Endras at the Zimny stadion Ondreja Nepela in Bratislava, the Germans defeated the Russians — predecessors from the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics included — for the very first time ever at a major international tournament and by shutout, as well.
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2013 wc … 2:0 – AUSTRIA ……………….. Rob ZEPP
2013 wc … 2:0 – LATVIA ………………….. Rob ZEPP
2012 wc … 3:0 – ITALY ……………………. Dennis ENDRAS
2011 wc … 2:0 – RUSSIA …………………. Dennis ENDRAS
2010 wc … 1:0 – SWITZERLAND ………… Dennis ENDRAS
2007 wc … 2:0 – CZECH REPUBLIC …….. Dmitrij KOTSCHNEW
2002 wc … 3:0 – SWITZERLAND ………… Marc SELIGER
2002 og … 3:0 – SLOVAKIA ………………. Marc SELIGER
1998 og … 2:0 – FRANCE ………………… Olaf KOLZIG
1997 wc … 1:0 – SLOVAKIA ………………. Joseph HEISS
1996 wc … 3:0 – AUSTRIA ………………… Klaus MERK
1994 wc … 4:0 – GREAT BRITAIN ……….. Joseph HEISS
1993 wc … 6:0 – NORWAY ……………….. Joseph HEISS
1992 og … 4:0 – POLAND ………………… Helmut DE RAAF

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Germany goaltender HELMUT DE RAAF (1) of Koelner Haie congratulates his rival SEAN BURKE of Canada, the National Hockey League veteran who was in the midst of a contract dispute with the New Jersey Devils, at the conclusion of the epic quarterfinal match at the 1992 Winter Olympic Games in Albertville, France; in a memorable affair that was only decided by the very first tiebreaker involving penalty shots in the long history of the Olympic tournament, the Germans lost when the last shot from Peter Draisaitl squeezed through Burke’s five-hole but rolled and died right smack on top of the goal line.
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1990 wc … 4:0 – NORWAY ………………… Helmut DE RAAF
1989 wc … 2:0 – POLAND …………………. Karl FRIESEN
1985 wc … 6:0 – EAST GERMANY ……….. Karl FRIESEN
1983 wc … 3:0 – ITALY …………………….. Erich WEISHAUPT
1978 wc … 0:0 – EAST GERMANY ……….. Erich WEISHAUPT
1962 wc … 9:0 – GREAT BRITAIN ………… Willi EDELMANN
1959 wc … 8:0 – EAST GERMANY ……….. Ulli JANSEN
1959 wc … 6:0 – SWITZERLAND ………….. Ulli JANSEN
1956 og … 7:0 – AUSTRIA …………………. Alfred HOFFMANN + Ulli JANSEN

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Bundesrepublik Deutschland goaltender ULLI JANSEN of EV Krefeld poses for a photograph in the open-air Stadio Olimpico del Ghiaccio at the 1956 Winter Olympic Games in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy. As a result of an odd decision that could have only been possible on account of the collective ‘genius’ of the International Olympic Committee, a “Unified Team of Germany” (die Gesamtedeutsche Mannschaft) appeared at both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games from 1956 until 1964. As would be the case again in 1960 and 1964, the Federal Republic of Germany from the west defeated the German Democratic Republic (Deutsche Demokratische Republik) from the east in a two-game, home-and-home qualification series for the right to appear at the Olympic ice hockey tournament in 1956.
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1939 wc … 0:0 – ITALY …………………… Alfred HOFFMANN
1939 wc … 1:0 – GREAT BRITAIN ………. Alfred HOFFMANN
1939 wc … 4:0 – POLAND ……………….. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1938 wc … 1:0 – LATVIA …………………. Alfred HOFFMANN
1938 wc … 8:0 – NORWAY ………………. Alfred HOFFMANN
1938 wc … 1:0 – HUNGARY ……………… Wilhelm EGGINGER
1937 wc … 5:0 – FRANCE ……………….. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1936 og … 3:0 – ITALY …………………… Wilhelm EGGINGER
1936 og … 2:0 – SWITZERLAND ………… Wilhelm EGGINGER
1935 wc … 5:0 – HOLLAND ………………. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1935 wc … 3:0 – ROMANIA ……………….. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1934 wc … 4:0 – FRANCE ………………… Walter LEINWEBER
1934 wc … 1:0 – CZECHOSLOVAKIA …… Walter LEINWEBER
1933 wc … 6:0 – BELGIUM ……………….. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1933 wc … 2:0 – POLAND ………………… Wilhelm EGGINGER
1933 wc … 4:0 – HUNGARY ………………. Wilhelm EGGINGER
1932 ec … 1:0 – CZECHOSLOVAKIA ……. Gerhard BALL
1928 og … 0:0 – AUSTRIA ………………… Alfred STEINKE
1927 wc … 5:0 – HUNGARY ………………. Mathias LEIS

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Germany national team goaltender WILHELM EGGINGER (black shirt), who appeared in 37 international contests for Deutschland over the course of his distinguished career, kneels down in front of his contemporaries as the domestic champion SC RIESSERSEE squad pause for a team photograph during the 1934/35 campaign.

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