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Thread: 2018 Olympics

  1. #1
    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    2018 Olympics

    It was announced yesterday that PyeongChang, South Korea would be hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics, beating out Munich and Annency, France. Also, per the IIHF's Twitter, they said that in an interesting twist, they said that there is no decision yet whether South Korea will get an automatic entry into the hockey tournament. What do you all make of that?
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    I could see a Nagano/Salt Lake style qualifier where SK can compete against the likes of Italy and Latvia for a spot in the final 12. I don't see the IIHF going with the 12 team format currently used, with SK as an automatic qualifier, that's for sure.

    To be honest the women's program is further off Olympic level than the men's program. They'll have to do something different in that tournament as well.

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    I think it'd be stupid not to give the hosts an automatic spot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RiaRiaHungaria View Post
    I think it'd be stupid not to give the hosts an automatic spot.
    I know it sounds stupid, but given South Korea's ranking compared to everybody else and it becomes a bit smart not to give them an automatic berth
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conesy View Post
    smart not to give them an automatic berth
    Yeah, but giving spots for 55-year old Kenyan skiers is smart? They will get their spot and loose their games by a wide margin and we will forget the blowouts 5 minutes after round robin ends.

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    well, SK is the host, and will be a big frustration for koreean fans. IIHF must think on this aspect. Maybe they will increase no. of teams.
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    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    I dunno, I feel that there may be a discrepancy between the caliber of teams if they expanded the tournament. It would be good for other countries to participate, but I feel that like I just mentioned, the top teams may end up soundly defeating an expanded field. Though then again, who knows what will happen with the development of hockey in these countries in 7 years' time.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sander.Ovechkin View Post
    well, SK is the host, and will be a big frustration for koreean fans. IIHF must think on this aspect. Maybe they will increase no. of teams.
    Not the IIHF's decision to make. The numbers of athletes at a Games is very tightly controlled by the IOC and isn't up for negotiation. That's why, for example, road and track cycling lost events to make way for mountain biking and BMX.

    While it may be a disappointment for South Korea to not have a team at the Olympics, I don't think that that is the worst thing that can happen to them. Having your team beaten 15-0 every single game is far worse for your sport's development than not being there at all.

    Personally, I think that South Korea should be set a target ranking and, if they don't meet that position by the end of the 2015/16 season, then they are told that they can't compete. That then leaves enough time for the remaining teams in the competition to know how many places are still up for grabs. I'd also suggest that that position should be a minimum of 21st place (i.e. 5th place in Division 1A).

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    The last time we had a "less worthy" entrant was the host Japanese in 1998. That year, as Slovaks will tell you, was the 14-team tournament where the bottom eight had to win their way into the final round against the Big Six. As Graham wrote, the IOC's athlete quota would probably destroy this option as well as the IIHF's 12-team plan.
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    I suspect we'll stick to the 12-team tournament, and while I do expect that Korea would get soundly beated by all comers, I still think they should have the option of automatic host entry.
    I expect them to remain within the bounds of Division I, and as long as they do I don't see how they're in any worse position than Japan in 1998. The difference is that Japan's IIHF ranking in '98 was artificially inflated due to their getting automatic entry to the top-level IHWC every year as the Far East representative.

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    South Korea will lose every game in the tournament and I hope the IIHF don't expand the oylmpic tournament.

    But like Steigs said South Korea should still be in the Division 1 regardless of how they perform

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    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hockeyfan 88 View Post
    South Korea will lose every game in the tournament and I hope the IIHF don't expand the oylmpic tournament.

    But like Steigs said South Korea should still be in the Division 1 regardless of how they perform
    That's kinda getting ahead of yourself, eh? I mean, we don't know how things can turn out in 7 years from now. Anything can happen. One strong age group or so can turn things around, as well as change fortunes.
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    your right Conesy South Korea could improve and do really well in the tournament. I really want them to do well in the tournament but I just don't see it happening in such a short period of time

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    With South Korea getting the Winter Olympics, there is an impetus for all winter sports to improve their standing in the various sports. I'm sure that the government will put lots of time, money and resources into the various federations so that their teams will be respectable. The Korean national hockey teams should get their automatic berths into the tournament. They will play well, though they won't shake up the world hockey order. Once Sochi 2014 is complete, the IIHF (and the other major hockey federations) should put a grand effort into developing the Korean hockey teams so that they are ready for 2018.

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    Quote Originally Posted by doubleplay View Post
    Once Sochi 2014 is complete, the IIHF (and the other major hockey federations) should put a grand effort into developing the Korean hockey teams so that they are ready for 2018.
    Why, when they do nothing to help develop the other nations? I had a huge problem with the Far East's guaranteed Pool A position. I would similarly have a problem if they were to make gestures towards South Korea that they have not offered to anyone else.

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    I think IIHF should be more worried about helping the lower divisons of hockey improve their game and help building more ice rinks in places like Ireland where they don't have the funds or the leadership to imporve on their own

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham View Post
    Why, when they do nothing to help develop the other nations?
    Graham.
    I meant that the IIHF and other countries should assist in providing technical resources (similar to the Women's mentorship program) in improving the Korean team in anticipation for 2018.

    There's going to be pressure from the IOC and TOP sponsors (Samsung) that the Korean national teams to be involved in the hockey tournaments. There will be a need to make the Korean teams not necessarily championship-calibre, but at least competitive against the elite teams in hockey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by doubleplay View Post
    I meant that the IIHF and other countries should assist in providing technical resources (similar to the Women's mentorship program) in improving the Korean team in anticipation for 2018.
    Surely the money required to do that would be better spent in initiatives that have a broader benefit than just South Korea?

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    Graham I think South Korea need the help to prepare for the 2018 Olympics. Hockey is not popular in Asia and A good performance form South Korea might inspire Asian teams like Japan and China to want to be competitive in hockey and increase popularity of the sport in Asia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hockeyfan 88 View Post
    Graham I think South Korea need the help to prepare for the 2018 Olympics. Hockey is not popular in Asia and A good performance form South Korea might inspire Asian teams like Japan and China to want to be competitive in hockey and increase popularity of the sport in Asia.
    It's also not popular in Ireland, Belgium, Spain, Greece, Turkey, anywhere in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America or Oceania. Why don't they get the same treatment? They aren't even in the position of being able to fund it themselves by using money earned from hosting an Olympic Games.

    We tried artificially enhancing Japan's position in world hockey through guaranteeing the Far East a place in Pool A every year. Japan were a better team than South Korea are now and yet, when the experiment ended, Japan returned to a level that they had been playing at before they got their Pool A place. So, as far as I'm concerned, we gave the Far East a chance and they didn't reap the benefits. I see no justification for trying it again.

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    Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by doubleplay View Post
    With South Korea getting the Winter Olympics, there is an impetus for all winter sports to improve their standing in the various sports. I'm sure that the government will put lots of time, money and resources into the various federations so that their teams will be respectable. The Korean national hockey teams should get their automatic berths into the tournament. They will play well, though they won't shake up the world hockey order. Once Sochi 2014 is complete, the IIHF (and the other major hockey federations) should put a grand effort into developing the Korean hockey teams so that they are ready for 2018.
    Problem is this:
    In the eyes of all the Asian nations who have been pouring money into Winter Sports the past couple of decades, Ice Hockey is a lost cause for their Winter Sports Federations.
    The amount of money and resources required to bring their national Ice Hockey's team to a position to contend for a medal (a long and expensive proposition) could yield many multiple medals in single athletic sports such as Speed Skating etc...
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    Well, what is interesting for me in the first place is, that there will be two Olympic Games in Asia. I thought that they usually change continents.
    And to South Korea, I think, that it would be fair to give them sure place in qualification round, i.e., they do not need to play in pre-qualification (as they have to play this round for Sochi 2014).
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    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    Sochi/Russia is considered a European nation, so I think it's incorrect to say that there are two Winter Olympics in a row in Asia

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    While Russia is mostly a European nation (almost 80% of the population live in the European part of Russia), Sochi is geographically located in Asia, according to the most used modern definition that uses the Greater Caucasus Watershed as the border. Sochi is south of that line (but only just).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bennison View Post
    While Russia is mostly a European nation (almost 80% of the population live in the European part of Russia), Sochi is geographically located in Asia, according to the most used modern definition that uses the Greater Caucasus Watershed as the border. Sochi is south of that line (but only just).
    Indeed, I also agree with you. What I am curious about is China. They have money and they want to be best in everything. Sure, I do not expect that they can win over Canada, but if they work hard they can beat countries like Italy, France, etc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hockey_history View Post
    Indeed, I also agree with you. What I am curious about is China. They have money and they want to be best in everything. Sure, I do not expect that they can win over Canada, but if they work hard they can beat countries like Italy, France, etc.
    Not worth it to them to put that kind of money into a program that is only good for one medal, when they can work on gymnastics, skiing, swimming, etc, and win many medals from the same number of athletes.
    That's why we've been seeing their hockey programs (both men's and women's) dropping down the world rankings and showing increasingly weaker results at world championships in recent years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham View Post
    It's also not popular in Ireland, Belgium, Spain, Greece, Turkey, anywhere in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America or Oceania. Why don't they get the same treatment? They aren't even in the position of being able to fund it themselves by using money earned from hosting an Olympic Games.

    We tried artificially enhancing Japan's position in world hockey through guaranteeing the Far East a place in Pool A every year. Japan were a better team than South Korea are now and yet, when the experiment ended, Japan returned to a level that they had been playing at before they got their Pool A place. So, as far as I'm concerned, we gave the Far East a chance and they didn't reap the benefits. I see no justification for trying it again.

    Graham.
    Asia is the future, economically speaking. Not to mention the large market (population) that every sports league/club/federation in the world has an interest in expanding to. It shouldn't be a surprise if the IIHF goes ahead with initiatives to promote hockey development in Korea for the Olympics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by -Helix- View Post
    Asia is the future, economically speaking. Not to mention the large market (population) that every sports league/club/federation in the world has an interest in expanding to. It shouldn't be a surprise if the IIHF goes ahead with initiatives to promote hockey development in Korea for the Olympics.
    The IIHF can do development camps and supply material to the NGBs but ultimately promotion and marketing is the national responsibility. The two most populous nations on the planet have just 1337 registered between them, 724 from India and 613 from China. We know the majority of Chinese hockey is centered around Harbin and Qiqihar. The national Asia League representative China Dragon no longer schedule home games in Beijing, focussing only Shanghai - and they are absolutely not rooted into the common mind of the public. The NGBs have to take responsibility to spread the game from sea to border and with their limited funds. As Steigs pointed out that the cost per medal is cheaper in individual sports, it is too much to ask these NGBs to improve the game where it is supported while also promoting the game in new areas, which may not have the required facilities already in place.

    With Korea, it may be a similar situation but with money being dumped into winter sports because of 2018. I'm not privy to where that money will go. In the quest for home medals, the funding will not exclusively go to development of team sports (ice hockey, bobsleigh, etc.) but also to individual sports (skeleton, biathlon, ski jumping) and sports the Koreans already excel in to assure a better chance at victory (short track).
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    Korea

    Not much of an update, but I asked Esa Tikkanen on Twitter (@tikitalk10) earlier this year: "Any contacts from your time playing in Korea know if they are going to invest in their hockey program preparing for 2018Olympics?"
    His response: "Don't know for sure. At least some top hockey people from Korea was in Helsinki during WC2012 meeting Finnish bosses. Tiki"

    Problem with the response is the ambiguity in that the Koreans could have been getting advice on (a) improving their program (we hope), or (b) simply tournament organization.
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    Korea

    Finnish legendary hockeyperson Juhani Tamminen could be South Korean next headcoach...

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    I think it would be a Good Idea to expand the format of the Winter Olympic Ice Hockey Tournament and allow more Teams to be allowed to Qualify to be in the Winter Olympics especially on the Men's side of things. I think this would increase interest in the Sport overall and help the Winter Olympics generate more interest also !

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    Quote Originally Posted by bob437 View Post
    I think it would be a Good Idea to expand the format of the Winter Olympic Ice Hockey Tournament and allow more Teams to be allowed to Qualify to be in the Winter Olympics especially on the Men's side of things. I think this would increase interest in the Sport overall and help the Winter Olympics generate more interest also !
    Could be onto something there, Bob. If we look back to 1998, 14 teams made it, 8 playing in the preliminary round to get two spots up for grabs in the final round. The tournament that year (and 2002) was expanded from 12. I'm sure it was passed off that the ex-Soviet republics and the Velvet Divorce created more quality teams than previously available but let's not forget Japan participated that year as hosts. The preliminary round was just as well an attempt to keep humiliating scores off the headlines for the hosts, who subsequently finished 13th ahead of Austria.
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    Nope.
    Also, how exactly do you expect to schedule four more teams into an already extremely short period? Twelve teams already play a very loaded schedule, especially when you factor in the women's tournament. You'd need a third arena, and in many winter Olympic host cities the second (and sometimes the first) need to be built from scratch.
    With all the investment going into the infrastructure, that much more is too much. ... many people would say there's already too much required to make it worth hosting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steigs View Post
    Nope.
    Also, how exactly do you expect to schedule four more teams into an already extremely short period? Twelve teams already play a very loaded schedule, especially when you factor in the women's tournament.
    Let's do some comparison work, just for the sake of argument, remembering the NHL's meddling caused the complaints of dropping the preliminary round:

    For all of these, two arenas were in use.

    Teams
    1998 - 14 men, 6 women
    2002 - 14 men, 8 women
    2014 - 12 men, 8 women

    Games, Game Days (some days had male/female overlaps)
    1998 - Men: 35 games, 13 days (3 games of one day were 9th-14th placements). Women: 17 games, 7 days
    2002 - Men: same as 1998. Women: 20 games, 9 days
    2014 - Men: 30 games, 10 days. Women: 22 games, 11 days (2 games of one day were quarterfinals, both winners and losers would move on to play semifinals.

    If we dump the placement games, men's games drop to 32. The women's tournament could just as well revert to the 2002-2010 format. The reason the IIHF got away from that was competitive balance, but those of us (forum members with a passing interest in women's hockey) in the know are aware of the potential scores of Canada-Japan, which required the extra quarterfinals. Remember that since women's hockey went to 8 teams, they have continued to have placement games for 5th and 7th whereas the men don't. That, however, has become important since the Women's World Championship Divisions now play in Olympic years.

    You'd need a third arena, and in many winter Olympic host cities the second (and sometimes the first) need to be built from scratch.
    We already have a third arena. There's just one problem. The IOC hasn't sacked the figure skating BS and freed up that ice for hockey but we all know that'll never happen. Anything that's scored exclusively by judging is not a sport!

    That's also why the Idiotic Olympic Committee should allow proper winter towns to host instead of metropolitan cities without any facilities. Or dump this "cluster" crap and allow the host nation to have events spread around like Albertville 1992. Vancouver was largely an exception to the metro rule because it more or less had many of the facilities (or capable ones) already. Even then, mountainous events were off in Whistler. Bids must now have some level of environmental friendliness to them, how about we start with places that don't need to build from scratch unless they want to for other reasons - which aren't paid for by taxpayers.

    With all the investment going into the infrastructure, that much more is too much. ... many people would say there's already too much required to make it worth hosting.
    Definately true. Its the very reason the Youth Olympics ask for no new contruction projects in the bids. That also pretty much means only former Winter Olympic hosts can host the YOGs...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steigs View Post
    Nope.
    Also, how exactly do you expect to schedule four more teams into an already extremely short period? Twelve teams already play a very loaded schedule, especially when you factor in the women's tournament. You'd need a third arena, and in many winter Olympic host cities the second (and sometimes the first) need to be built from scratch.
    With all the investment going into the infrastructure, that much more is too much. ... many people would say there's already too much required to make it worth hosting.
    I don't remember there being more than 2 women's games on any given day in Sochi. Even if there were 4 women's games (which would be every team playing on the same day) that would still leave time for at least 2 men's games that same day since there were generally 3 timeslots alloted for each game day. 3 games x 2 arenas = 6 games.

    There's no reason they couldn't bring back the preliminary round (which wouldn't really require NHL participation) as they had it before. If anything you would think the IOC would be pushing hard for it because more games mean more money. Though if it's true the NHL has a problem with it for some reason... they usually get what they want.

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    As per the IIHF website, both the men's and women's South Korean hockey teams have been granted automatic qualification to the Olympic tournament in 2018.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom93 View Post
    As per the IIHF website, both the men's and women's South Korean hockey teams have been granted automatic qualification to the Olympic tournament in 2018.
    Thus the onus now falls on South Korea not to embarrass themselves in four years. Hopefully they can make enough progress where games are relatively close.
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    The women's program will have a tougher time, they're a full division lower than Italy was for the 2006 Olympics... that being said, it seems easier to grow the women's program to move up the rankings than for the men's.

    The men's program is sitting about at the same point as Japan was in 1998... long time ago for comparison, but that's the best we have. They're behind where Italy was in '06, but not by THAT much. They've shown that they can be competitive against the Elite/DivIA elevator nations, so while we can't expect them to win any games at the Olympics, there's no reason why with some work they can't keep scores fairly close. Beyond that, it will just be hard work and experience that will help them get to where they need to be. The exchange programs they spoke of will help, but more than anything it will be the need for more games and training time as a national team. Basically, get the best 30 or so players (25 skaters plus 5 goalies or somesuch), have regular training camps a few times per year, and play some extra tournaments during the year (maybe host an international-break tournament at one point, invite Japan and a couple DivI European nations, or one Euro team plus a team made up of Asia League imports), and try to get into one european tournament on top of that.


    All in all, I'm glad they got in. If anything can give the game a shot in the arm there, this could be it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steigs View Post
    The women's program will have a tougher time, they're a full division lower than Italy was for the 2006 Olympics... that being said, it seems easier to grow the women's program to move up the rankings than for the men's.
    The Koreans have two advantages, comparitively. One, they won't be playing against the North Americans unless something completely unexpected happens over the next few years and secondly, their goaltending with Jung, I believe, is fundamentally stronger than what the duo of Frasnelli and Montanari were.
    The men's program is sitting about at the same point as Japan was in 1998... long time ago for comparison, but that's the best we have. ...more than anything it will be the need for more games and training time as a national team. Basically, get the best 30 or so players (25 skaters plus 5 goalies or somesuch), have regular training camps a few times per year, and play some extra tournaments during the year (maybe host an international-break tournament at one point, invite Japan and a couple DivI European nations, or one Euro team plus a team made up of Asia League imports), and try to get into one european tournament on top of that.
    The comparison with Japan isn't as fair because of the tournament format where Japan didn't see much in the way of NHL players whereas Korea will be in the thick of it. Assuming the NHL doesn't bar its players, mind you. As you mentioned about going to Europe for tournaments, its a good idea and there is precedent. Japan used to play in the EIHC and Korea is actually equal to or better than some EIHC participants.

    The national team training camps will be helpful outside of the season with orientation and systems implementation. The idea of an AL imports team is brilliant not just for Korea but Asia League could expand this into an annual all star event with a skills competition and round robin between its imports and the national teams of Japan and Korea. During the international breaks, it wouldn't be a terrible idea to host an annual 3-game series against the Pacific KHL teams, alternating between Amur and Admiral each year. It benefits both sides as they can try out some VHL and junior guys and Korea gets a good challenge.

    It would be beneficial to reintroduce the University Challenge Cup of Asia to give these 17-28 year olds more international experience with the "student" status being optional. This way while the Korean 'A' team is playing together, some of the fringe guys can play against the fellow ASPG members China, Japan, and Kazakhstan. I'd like to see the U18 Challenge Cup come back. This existed before for the weaker nations but this could be expanded upwards. There can be two divisions but like the Women's Challenge Cup, there wouldn't be promotion and relegation. The top group with China, Japan, Kazakhstan, and Korea can play annually while the weaker and less-financed countries play every other year.

    The exchange program is something I'm not exactly sure about because it hasn't been explained fully. Are these players going to just practice with high level teams? They still need game action though.
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  40. #40
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    Korea is lined up to play the EIHC tournament Hungary is hosting in November where they will also face Italy and Poland. They were also picked as a potential participant for another one in February in Austria but that spot went eventually to Slovakia.

    http://www.eihc.eu/view/eihc/eihc-2014-2015
    http://www.eishockey.at/nationalteam.../spieltermine/

  41. #41
    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    The Hockey News just posted a piece about how the NHL was trying to make a decision about sending NHLers:
    http://www.thehockeynews.com/blog/nh...2018-olympics/
    Twitter: @CSmeeth

  42. #42
    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    Word has come through unofficial channels, but apparently one unnamed front-office NHL person told Greg Brady of Fan590 radio in Toronto "We're done with the Olympics. Bet the league doesn't wait long to announce it either." Brady posted the quote on Twitter yesterday.

    As far as the one point the article makes that the exposure of the Olympics doesn't mean much, that's true. The NHL has turned down opportunities to participate more directly in international hockey, but has turned away from games in Europe, has declined a stake in the Champions League that was offered, and now seems to think that the hockey world owes it everything, but that it owes nothing back. It seems perfectly content to turn away from the rest of the world and focus its efforts solely on the area where it exists: North America. It seems to feel that it no longer needs to try and grow its brand beyond its own borders, and that is a sad, shortsighted statement.

    I hope the players' association gets it together and forces the league to participate. Barring that, I hope the various national federations invite players anyway, and that enough of the stars bolt to play in Pyeongchang to make the statement that needs to be made.

    Lots of time though for the NHL to remove its head from its rectum and do the right thing.

  43. #43
    IHF Staff Trim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steigs View Post
    I hope the players' association gets it together and forces the league to participate. Barring that, I hope the various national federations invite players anyway, and that enough of the stars bolt to play in Pyeongchang to make the statement that needs to be made.
    The NHL will suspend those players for going AWOL but if they're already on their flights, it wouldn't matter much to them. Even though they'd be caught in the crossfire, I doubt the IIHF would be foolish enough to bar those players from Olympic play - after all the NHL isn't part of a NGB.

    Lots of time though for the NHL to remove its head from its rectum and do the right thing.
    That's optimistic. Usually when they pull their head out, they announce something that smells of the very thing in their rectum.
    Bringing ice hockey to Northwest China!

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  44. #44
    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    If it goes this way, it's basically a first step in burning all bridges with the international hockey community... so at that point there isn't much left to stop the IIHF and national federations from playing whoever is willing to walk away from their clubs for a couple weeks.
    The NHL would have a very hard time with the PR fallout.

  45. #45
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    Looks like NHL players will take part in the final qualification round

    https://www.facebook.com/ishockeylan...75704115785340

  46. #46
    IHF Member WHawks's Avatar
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    That is what it says yes, I could translate it if needed.

  47. #47
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    IIHF.com page for the 2018 Olympics is now up.

    http://www.iihf.com/home-of-hockey/c...hips/olympics/

  48. #48
    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    I am not very familiary with how iihf rankings works and how many points you get after one WC, but is it possible for Croatia (currently 28th) to move to places to avoid preliminary qualifications ? Can we do it by repeating 2nd place at D1B ?

  49. #49
    IHF Member WHawks's Avatar
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    No that's not possible. Croatia would need to overtake Denmark, Kazakhstan, Italy or Austria forexample. Those are the current bottom four nations to directly qualify into the last qualification round. All of which are at least elevator WC <-> WC D1A teams.
    Rank 18 is the last to receive direct qualification to the final round, Italy is sitting there currently 850 points ahead of Croatia. A D1B win would grant Croatia 680 points, while Italy finishing anywhere but last in D1A would give them 700+ points. Theres also old tournament placements to consider though, which gradually grants less and less points. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IIHF_World_Ranking for details.
    Last edited by WHawks; 10-03-2015 at 18:08.

  50. #50
    IHF Member Laho's Avatar
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    IIHF released its 2015 pre-tournament rankings today, which will be used to determine the first eight participants (apart from South Korea) to the Olympic hockey tournament.

    Unless I'm grossly mistaken, we can say with certainty that at least two teams have already qualified. Latvia currently sits on the 9th seed with 2135 points. If they win this year, they naturally will still be 9th at minimum - likely higher. And in case they win, gain 1200 points and rise to 3335, they still can't overtake Finland even if the Finns finish dead last, since Finland's 2535+820 will total at 3355. Using the same formula, they naturally can't overtake Sweden either if the Swedes sink and Latvia wins it.
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