Ice hockey: Germany’s possible opponents and favorites at the World Cup

Ice hockey: Germany’s possible opponents and favorites at the World Cup

The national ice hockey team is about to reach the quarter-finals at the World Cup in the Czech Republic. The answers to the most important questions before the crucial week of the World Cup.

The World Cup quarter-finals are now just a formality for the German national ice hockey team. From Thursday the knockout system would continue.

When will we move into the top eight?

A win against France is enough for Germany to conclude the group phase on Tuesday (12.20 p.m./ProSieben and MagentaSport). If Latvia does not win against Slovakia on Sunday, the selection of the German Ice Hockey Federation (DEB) will reach the quarter-finals without playing. If the Latvians manage to surprise the Olympic bronze medalist, they would also have to defeat the USA two days later. In addition, Germany cannot win against France.

Who are the possible opponents?

Hosts the Czech Republic, favorite opponents Switzerland or world champions Canada. Only on the final day will it be clear who and where national coach Harold Kreis’ team will play in the quarter-finals. The knockout phase is played crosswise. For example, the first in group A will have to deal with the fourth in group B. Germany last beat Switzerland a year ago and later became runner-up in the world championships. Switzerland was also defeated in the knockout phase in 2010 and 2021 as well as at the 2018 Olympics. “I would be happy. It’s always fun to play against them. They might be a little afraid of us if you look at the last few years,” said JJ Peterka.

Where is the game played?

Germany has so far played all its games in Ostrava. However, only the first two teams in Group B remain in the third largest city in the Czech Republic and will play in the quarter-finals there. The third and fourth teams travel to the second location in Prague. The only exception: hosts Czech Republic will stay in Prague, even if they come third in Group A. Then the second-placed team from this group has to travel to Ostrava to play against the third-placed team in Group B. The two semi-finals on Saturday as well as the game for third place and the final on Sunday will also be played in Prague.

Which German players have been able to convince so far?

The three NHL professionals Nico Sturm, JJ Peterka and goalkeeper Philipp Grubauer have filled their leadership roles well so far. Sturm, in particular, has proven his importance on and off the ice. Peterka leads the top scorers list with five goals. Grubauer unnerved the Slovaks, Latvians and Kazakhs. The offensive line with Leonhard Pföderl (three goals, five assists) and Yasin Ehliz (two goals, six assists) also showed enthusiasm. Kai Wissmann from the Eisbären Berlin and Lukas Kälble from Neu Mannheim set accents in defense and were also accurate in front of the opponent’s goal.

Who will be world champion?

Sweden has made the best impression so far with its outstanding defensive trio of Victor Hedman, Erik Karlsson and Rasmus Dahlin. With the 5:2 against the USA and the 6:1 against Germany, the eleven-time world champion set clear exclamation marks. The Tre Kronor were last successful at a World Cup in 2018. But Switzerland has also shown its best side so far: hosts the Czech Republic were defeated, and for many experts it is the best Swiss squad ever with seven NHL professionals. But the Czech Republic, who have received three reinforcements from North America with superstar David Pastrnak, Martin Necas and Pavel Zacha, as well as world champions Canada, are also always to be reckoned with. Despite a strong contingent, the USA remains the great unknown. The US boys were extremely moody in the preliminary round.

Source: Stern

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