Wednesday, May 26, 2010


A couple of days have gone since the Ice Hockey World Championship was finished last Sunday. The Czechs beat the Russians and grabbed the gold, whereas the Swedes beat the Germans and took bronze. I would have wanted to see Sweden fight for the gold, but the Swedes lost to the Czechs by a very narrow margin in the semi final.

Under normal circumstances, I would say a bronze medal to Sweden was some comfort, but I would actually have liked to see the Germans win medals. Hardly anybody remember the fourth team, because only the medalists are usually listed. In ice hockey, there are rather few countries who usually split the medals between them. There are the "four greats": Russia, Canada, the Czech Republic and Sweden, and then there are the USA, Finland, and Slovakia. Germany have a few medals from way back, but I believe it would be good for the sport that such a large country as Germany would get a medal and thus a tangible proof of how much better they were this year than they usually are. I do have hopes that the fourth place may spark some interest in Germany and make the Germans better in the long run, but a medal would have been even better.

Sweden got the bronze last year and will probably have many more opportunities than Germany to take medals in the near future. It would have been a great loss for the Swedes to lose the bronze to Germany, but perhaps it would have made more Swedish players eager to come back next year and take medals. We have had a debate that there are many Swedish players, especially from the teams in the NHL, who refuse to play in the national team. When Sweden take the bronze without these players, it looks like less of a crisis, whereas if Sweden would have lost against Germany, more people would have considered action necessary to get the best Swedish players to want to play in the national team.

It is not that I am disappointed that my home country won against Germany, but I believe a German victory might have been better for the ice hockey of both countries in the long run.

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