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Thread: IIHF World Championships 2012 Div-II Group A

  1. #1

    Mens IHWC IIHF World Championships 2012 Div-II Group A

    There seems to be no topic yet about various IIHF Men's world championships that will take place between April and May this year...

    Anyone looking forward to it ?

    I, for instance, am extremely excited about the Division IIA tournament in Iceland this year. I even considered a trip to Reykjavik, but it turned out a bit too expensive unfortunately...

    Any pronostics or expectations ? Of course, I'm hoping for Estonia's promotion this year, but I have no idea how competitive the team is this year... some experts around here could probably light this out for me :P
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    IHF Member Dompa's Avatar
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    Croatia (depends of how many new Croatians will play) could be a strong favorite to win gold.
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    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    I would be more than satisfied if Andy Serich, John Hecimovic and Joel Prpic will play. That would make Croatia main favorite for promotion.
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

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    IHF Member zamo86's Avatar
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    Which of the North Americans will be eligible to represent Croatia on this tournament?

  5. #5
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zamo86 View Post
    Which of the North Americans will be eligible to represent Croatia on this tournament?
    John Hečimović

    Joel Prpić

    Kenny MacAulay

    Andy Sertić

    Chris Powers

    As I said; Sertić, Prpić, Hečimović and Mac Aulay are "high level" EBEL players who will be incredible addition to the squad. However, Powers ended his career on the end of last season. Even when he was active he wasn't better than some Croatian born players. Especially now he CAN'T have his place on the roster.
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

  6. #6
    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    I'd suggest that Croatia is probably the favourite to promote even without any of their naturalized dual-citizens.
    Considering the sorry state of the Serbian chamionship (by which of course I mean the lack thereof), I'd say that Serbia is probably the favourite for relegation, though if they get their game together they could give either or both of Iceland and New Zealand a really good run. It's a pretty tough one to call.

  7. #7
    IHF Member WHawks's Avatar
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    I have Croatia for promotion here and New Zealand to relegate I think. Although it's hard to tell what sort of shape the Serbian team will be in if there is indeed no league games there this season? As for Iceland it will be interesting to see if the players they've got playing in the danish second league has gained anything from that (if they are even part of the NT), or it was a bad idea from national team coach Olaf Eller to bring them over.
    Really looking forward to see the competitiveness of these new group setups, this group could be one of the ones that has really benefitted from this format.
    Hoping Spain and Estonia can challenge my promotion favourites from Croatia though.

  8. #8
    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    With naturalized players Croatia will win promotion, but I am probably only one who thinks that naturalized players will not show up for national team. Season in ebel league is long and Medvescak has chances for long playoffs and I don't think Sertich and others will have enough motive (after hard season) to represent country they never heard about just few years back. With only home players we will lose against estonia, no doubt.

  9. #9
    Does anybody know if Siim Liivik, who has finland-estonia nationalities, could be elligible for playing with Estonia, or has he ever done it before ? I can't find any trace of him doing so...
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    IHF Staff Trim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by P&H View Post
    Does anybody know if Siim Liivik, who has finland-estonia nationalities, could be elligible for playing with Estonia, or has he ever done it before ? I can't find any trace of him doing so...
    He played for Finland in the 2008 U20 World Championship but I doubt he would play for Estonia. Has he played four consecutive years in Estonia in his life?
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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Trim View Post
    He played for Finland in the 2008 U20 World Championship but I doubt he would play for Estonia. Has he played four consecutive years in Estonia in his life?
    To be honest, I don't know... I don't even know what are the rules for this... I was just thinkin that he's a pretty good player and he would be a major help for such a small national team , but of course, he's probably more interested to grow bigger in Finland and/or internationally than help little Estonia..

    What about Robert Rooba, though ?
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    IHF Staff Graham's Avatar
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    Siim Liivik has played in Finland every season since he represented them in the u20 Worlds. Therefore, he is not eligible to play for Estonia.

    Robert Rooba is already playing for the Estonia national teams. He captained the u20 side at the World Championships last month.

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    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    Serbia has a good chunk of their national team playing for Partizan in Slohockej. As a result, I can't see them getting relegated.

    I figure it's a battle between Iceland and New Zealand to stay up.

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    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    Yes, most players of Serbian NT are playing regularly (and most of them good) in Partizan in Slohokej league. Few players also play in lower Swedish leagues so lack of domestic championship won't hurt their team. It will in the future because junior teams are getting weaker but that's for another topic. I see New Zealand as a favorite for relegation. Croatia should promote while I predict Estonia for second candidate. Andrei Makrov is having great season in Belarus and if he will play Estonia should be strong opponent to Croatia.

    @ Marc B. - it's SlohoKej not SlohoCKej.
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    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    I know........habit, I guess. Sorry.

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    oh yes ! how could I possibly forget Markov...
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    IHF Member zamo86's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snapshot View Post
    but I am probably only one who thinks that naturalized players will not show up for national team.
    You are most definetly not the only one . Bringing foreign mercenaries to play for your national team is the easiest thing and anyone can do it. Making your own players is a totaly different thing and if countries who produce them get shadowed by teams which simply buy them, imagine how they feel. Basiclly, there is no point for new countries to try to get in the world of hockey on their own if others are using the easy way in. My opinion.

  18. #18
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zamo86 View Post
    You are most definetly not the only one . Bringing foreign mercenaries to play for your national team is the easiest thing and anyone can do it. Making your own players is a totaly different thing and if countries who produce them get shadowed by teams which simply buy them, imagine how they feel. Basiclly, there is no point for new countries to try to get in the world of hockey on their own if others are using the easy way in. My opinion.
    That's not what snapshot was trying to say. And Croatia would be favorite for promotion in this group even without their naturalized players
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pršljen View Post
    That's not what snapshot was trying to say. And Croatia would be favorite for promotion in this group even without their naturalized players
    Truth. I have nothing against naturalized players in team, just don't think they will answer the call. Why i think like that I said in my early post. Passports they have are (mostly) because of points in ebel.

  20. #20
    IHF Member BASSA's Avatar
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    First favorite in this group is Estonia, why some of you thinking that Croatia have better chances? (in this moment Estonia is better than some Nt in higher Div like Australia and Romania). Last tournament in old sistem Div1 they played with Kazakhstan, GBR, Ukraina, Poland, Lithuania - very close teams (in other group they would be better than Holland and Spain - are you agree?).

    Croatia have chances but to be 1st favorite its not real to say (with all 5 duals, and with all Ebel guys from 4th line). Estonia have 10 players enough good to play equal game in any time with stronger NT than Croatia, am I said something wrong?
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    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    BASSA, that's only your opinion. I think that Croatia last year lost to Romania only because of bad coaches and because of one player's arrogance. And give me please those 10 players, who are they? Did you watch them, where they play. In leagues stronger than EBEL and Slohokej where most of Croatia's players play?
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    With no foreginers in crotian team, chanecs are 60-40 for estonia, with foreginers chances are 70-30 for croatia. Apart from Makrov estonia don't has a player in sertich/macaulay/hecimovic/prpic level.

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    IHF Member BASSA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pršljen View Post
    BASSA, that's only your opinion. I think that Croatia last year lost to Romania only because of bad coaches and because of one player's arrogance. And give me please those 10 players, who are they? Did you watch them, where they play. In leagues stronger than EBEL and Slohokej where most of Croatia's players play?
    Yes, I watched them (Novi Sad, 3 years before). In Ebel we know who play and who help in the game, but ok training with Ebel roster is also good thing for players. Slohokej is 50% of team (maybe 60-70%) but we can see that Mladost have lot problems with Slovenian teams. In this moment i cant put Est 10 names but to say that only Hecimovic, Sertich, Macaulay, Prpic will bring advatage - maybe, but i dont beleive - in hockey you play with min 3 full lines (15), and if it is enough for 1st place? In Swe-Div2 Varlberg have 5 Est players, and i think that Swe-div2 is stronger than Slohokej (40 games in reg part, plus playoff, plus that is Swe). Its too early in this moment to speak about that because we dont know who will be in the roster for 60 days.
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    IHF Member WHawks's Avatar
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    Then there's Lahesalu (French Ligue Magnus) and Rodin/Suur (EIHL), Konoshev (swedish div. 1), that are also playing at a relatively high level, but still I only see Makrov as the only one that really stands out compared to the mentioned possible Croatian additions of nationalized players. Alexander Petrov is probably also worth a mention, however he only playes French league 2 now.

  25. #25
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BASSA View Post
    Yes, I watched them (Novi Sad, 3 years before). In Ebel we know who play and who help in the game, but ok training with Ebel roster is also good thing for players. Slohokej is 50% of team (maybe 60-70%) but we can see that Mladost have lot problems with Slovenian teams. In this moment i cant put Est 10 names but to say that only Hecimovic, Sertich, Macaulay, Prpic will bring advatage - maybe, but i dont beleive - in hockey you play with min 3 full lines (15), and if it is enough for 1st place? In Swe-Div2 Varlberg have 5 Est players, and i think that Swe-div2 is stronger than Slohokej (40 games in reg part, plus playoff, plus that is Swe). Its too early in this moment to speak about that because we dont know who will be in the roster for 60 days.
    3 years ago??? That's a lot of time and when even Serbia beat them three years ago shows that Estonia is not so stronger than Croatia. If the team improved so much in three years and that is now better than Croatia with 5 new players then you can't say that their players are better because you watched them 3 years ago when even Serbia beat them. With addition of Prpić, Hečimović, Sertić, MacAulay and Powers Croatia has better team than Estonia 100%.
    It's early to predict but I believe that roster won't have 60-70% of Slohokej players, not even close. There are Tomljenović, Marković, Rendulić, Trstenjak who play abroad and Blagus, Kanaet, Šijan and Lazić who play in EBEL (OK, Lazić not all the time). Maybe not all of them will make the aquad (Marković for example) but the rest of them will. In Slohokej Novak, T.Čunko and Kučera are one of the best lines in league, doesn't matter that Mladost isn't on the top of the league.

    And plus 5 new players (three of them are big EBEL level - one is average and one is low). I don't see how is Estonia better than this team.
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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    It is still too early to predict rosters. Maybe there will be some players out becasue of injury (on both sides) and if it is some key player that can make diffirence. After all, that is only one game that (Cro-Est) will decide winner and in one game everything is possible.

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    IHF Member Dompa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pršljen View Post
    BASSA, that's only your opinion. I think that Croatia last year lost to Romania only because of bad coaches and because of one player's arrogance. And give me please those 10 players, who are they? Did you watch them, where they play. In leagues stronger than EBEL and Slohokej where most of Croatia's players play?
    I definitely don´t agree with bassa, but bad coaches will probably be in Iceland again, and knowing Borna for last 7 or 8 years, he will be arrogant again and always. That´s him. Btw, you did not mention Sertić.

    ...and maybe Delić...
    and one more guy who will most probably be in the squad...
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    IHF Member BASSA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snapshot View Post
    It is still too early to predict rosters. Maybe there will be some players out becasue of injury (on both sides) and if it is some key player that can make diffirence. After all, that is only one game that (Cro-Est) will decide winner and in one game everything is possible.
    +1
    Its too early in this moment to speak about that because we dont know who will be in the roster for 60 days.

    "Croatia last year lost to Romania only because of bad coaches and because of one player's arrogance."

    What will be excuse next time?
    Last edited by BASSA; 13-01-2012 at 12:45.
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  29. #29
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    This is what I like about this new divisions format; teams in this division are similar in quality and it's not easy to say who will promote and who will be relegated.

    My EARLY prediction is:
    1. Croatia
    2. Estonia
    3. Spain
    4. Serbia
    5. Iceland
    6. New Zealand
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
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    IHF Member EVH's Avatar
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    Estonia's chances depends on how well they have prepared. Two years ago they had Finnish coaching staff for the whole season and it ended up to crushing every opponent and they deserved the promotion to Division I. I talked with the coaches and they told that prior to the tournament they had to arrange the buses, hotels etc and the federation did practically nothing. They trained in old Soviet era missile factory, the roof leaked and the facilities were awful. They players were also told to do exactly like they told or they can forget the tournament and that left some potential guy outside the NT because they didn't obey the rules.

    They should co-operate more with Finnish coaches and get more youth players to Finland but I don't know if there has been any permanent changes in ways of doing things since the Finnish coaches left after the promotion.

    Iceland has done very well in recent tournaments and if everything goes perfectly they could fight again for the bronze medal. In Croatia 2011 they were close to huge upset against Romania but the more experienced team had the lucky bounces and Romania won that game and the tournament.

    Does anybody know how tough team Spain will ice? I wouldn't count them out of the promotion battle.

    As a huge fan of Ice Blacks I really wish that New Zealand would earn a 3rd consecutive spot in Division II but it's literally very very long way. Chris Eaden as forward and goalies Zak Nothling and Rick Parry are the key players who must carry the team at least against Serbia and even that might not be enough.

    I hope Borna have learned some humbleness this season in Finland. He has scored 11+18=29 points in 20 games in U-20 SM-Liiga and he has already performed in SM-Liiga and that's a good sign. That's what he set his target for this season when I talked with him in Zagreb.

    I'll most likely travel to Iceland to witness maybe the most interesting division II tournament ever.

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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dompa View Post
    I definitely don´t agree with bassa, but bad coaches will probably be in Iceland again, and knowing Borna for last 7 or 8 years, he will be arrogant again and always. That´s him. Btw, you did not mention Sertić.

    ...and maybe Delić...
    and one more guy who will most probably be in the squad...
    From few sources I heard that we might be suprised (in good way) with choice of new nt coach.

  32. #32
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    Does that surprise have name maybe?
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pršljen View Post
    Does that surprise have name maybe?
    Marty Raymond

  34. #34
    IHF Member Dompa's Avatar
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    and who will pay him?
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    My vote goes for Croatia.

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    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    Could go many ways. Estonia is definitely the favoured team, though Croatia has a chance of bringing in its first naturalized Cronucks which could make a big difference.
    Spain should not be underrated, Division I has much more depth than Division II, and their top players who've learned elite junior hockey in Finland could make a difference here. They did get to DivI before, so it's not guarranteed that they'll not do it again.

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    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Nice to see that you founded gamesheets of pee-wee games from early 90-s ;-)

  39. #39
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    On the assumption that Croatia will be using its Cronucks - including one or two who don't even have any Croatian ancestry - my table would look as follows:

    1. Croatia
    2. Estonia
    3. Serbia
    4. Iceland
    5. Spain
    6. New Zealand

    If the Cronucks don't come, it is even money between Croatia and Estonia, in my view.

    Serbia is basically Partizan Belgrade - that's a top Slohokej team and should easily take bronze, if not challenge for second place.

    Iceland is playing at home, which really helps them, and from the tapes I've watched, the Icelandic league has greatly improved recently, and now seems to be of a better standard than the Spanish league.....as long as the home team can contain that Spanish offenseman who played in Sweden but is now playing back at home (Alejandro Pedraz? Can't remember his last name), then they should take 4th place.

    Yes, Spain promoted to D.I recently......Israel played in D.I in 2006. That and a token will get you a subway ride.

    I honestly think New Zealand, for all of the (very impressive) strides they have made, is outclassed here and will finish last.

  40. #40
    IHF Member WHawks's Avatar
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    Think Juan Muńoz is the one you're thinkin of Marc, although Pedraz is also one of Spain's offensive star players. He played in the finnish juniors for some seasons. Also their keeper, Ander Alcaine shouldn't be forgotten, he is starting goaltender in the top French league.

  41. #41
    IHF Staff Starkovs's Avatar
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    I have been so impressed with the way Alcaine has played this season, didnt think he would do as well as he did, reason he won rookie this year. If Alcaine can carry his play to the Worlds, Spain should do just fine in fighting the better countries and staying in the Group, plus the kid is just 20, if he continues to get better every year, Spain should be good for awhile.

  42. #42
    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Brunengraber View Post
    On the assumption that Croatia will be using its Cronucks - including one or two who don't even have any Croatian ancestry - my table would look as follows:

    1. Croatia
    2. Estonia
    3. Serbia
    4. Iceland
    5. Spain
    6. New Zealand

    If the Cronucks don't come, it is even money between Croatia and Estonia, in my view.

    Serbia is basically Partizan Belgrade - that's a top Slohokej team and should easily take bronze, if not challenge for second place.

    Iceland is playing at home, which really helps them, and from the tapes I've watched, the Icelandic league has greatly improved recently, and now seems to be of a better standard than the Spanish league.....as long as the home team can contain that Spanish offenseman who played in Sweden but is now playing back at home (Alejandro Pedraz? Can't remember his last name), then they should take 4th place.

    Yes, Spain promoted to D.I recently......Israel played in D.I in 2006. That and a token will get you a subway ride.

    I honestly think New Zealand, for all of the (very impressive) strides they have made, is outclassed here and will finish last.
    As You said, with cronucks, odds for us to beat Eesti are good, without them it's equal.

    Cronucks are likely won't show up, as they will demand money and only one for whom I am sure that will play is Hecimovic John, fan favourite for first two seasons with Bears, fired before begining of this season due to some issues with coach and board (that is still mystery why he left). From first day with Bears he always said how playing for country of his parents is his big wish and he said that more than once.

    That said, it would be big suprise if he doesn't come to play for Croatia...

    My prediction for this year's tournament is that we will finish behind Estonia and next year, when Australia will be in our group we are going to promote.

  43. #43
    IHF Staff Steigs's Avatar
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    I suspect there might be a couple others who might play (stress on "might"), after all they did bother to get the citizenship and play long enough to become eligible.
    That being said, at least one guy (don't remember who off the top of my head) said straight-up that he would not play for Croatia. I wonder if any of the non-Cro 'Nucks will play if they are offered the opportunity. After all, international play is always good for a hockey resume, and the level of play of this tournament is relatively undemanding for EBEL players.

  44. #44
    IHF Staff Trim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DHKStarkovs View Post
    I have been so impressed with the way Alcaine has played this season, didnt think he would do as well as he did, reason he won rookie this year. If Alcaine can carry his play to the Worlds, Spain should do just fine in fighting the better countries and staying in the Group, plus the kid is just 20, if he continues to get better every year, Spain should be good for awhile.
    Last year in the Universiade, Alcaine also managed to stop 63 of 64 shots in a 2-0 loss to a Kazakhstan squad with several players who competed at the elite U20 World Championships in prior years. He followed up on that in April in Div I-A giving a 91.13% (185/203) performance in four games, including a win over Korea, en route to relegation. The young lad has no problems on the international scene either.
    Bringing ice hockey to Northwest China!

    I'm the hole formerly known as KazakhEagles

  45. #45
    IHF Member Snapshot's Avatar
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    Croatian TV "Sportska Televizija" (Sport television) will broadcast all five Croatia games from Iceland. This TV has also free web streaming on their site so everybody who is interested can watch.

  46. #46
    IHF Member pedalinka's Avatar
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    My wild guess here :-)

    1. Croatia
    2. Serbia
    3. Estonia
    4. Spain
    5. Island
    6. New Zealand

  47. #47
    IHF Member BASSA's Avatar
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    There is some news in our sport newspaper, our Nt started (12.03.) the preparations for Island tournament. Most players are from hk Partizan and also 3 abroad players (Nemanja Jankovic, Robert Sabados, Nikola 'Nik' Bibic). Only Branko Mamic is not confirmed, but rumours is that he wont be in the team.

    One quastion for Marc B. - what is the level of this league?
    link: ASHL - Nik Bibic

    My main favorite is still Estonia, all others will be just good opponents, and will be interesting battle for 2nd place (Croatia, Spain, Island, Serbia). New Zealand with no chance in this equal group.
    Last edited by BASSA; 18-03-2012 at 13:22.
    Serbian hockey
    Senior 2A - U20 2B - U18 2B

  48. #48
    IHF Member fan75's Avatar
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    ASHL is a men's league around Toronto, it is completely amateur.

  49. #49
    IHF Member Mirlovic Zagora's Avatar
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    1. Estonia
    2. Croatia (without CROCAN's)
    3. Spain
    4. Serbia
    5. Iceland
    6. New Zealand

  50. #50
    IHF Member BlameThaGame's Avatar
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    i think that its 50% for either team to win Estonia/Croatia! Estonia is a team that can surprize teams that are way over their level and next time they do rly bad vs team that are on a lower level as Estonia lol! also it depends how many naturalized players will actualy play for croatia and if they will even be motivated enough to play on that level ( Mladost Vs Medvescak was a good example of that ,where Mladost beated Medvescak with some players from EBEL team, Frank Banham, Joel prpich, kanaet, Tomislav Zanoski.. overal like 9 players from EBEL roster played) ! and ofc playing vs Croacan's would also rize motivation of Estonia! motivation will be the key i say!

    i can't decide who of Cro/Est to put on 1st place so ima do my list like that:

    1. Croatia ( with or without naturalized players ) / Estonia
    2.
    3.Serbia
    4.Spain
    5.Iceland
    6.New Zealand

    Gl to all tho :)! will be interesting tournament, i realy love new IIHF group system
    The world of hockey knows no borders

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