Will Slovakian hockey fans have much to cheer about in 2010? It’s doubtful, yet this is the most well-rounded team that Slovakia has ever put together. It’s also a team filled with guys that used to play in the NHL and even has a guy who isn’t playing hockey right now! Without further ado, Team Slovakia:
I think it’s safe to say that this is the best goaltending that Slovakia has ever had… Which isn’t saying much. But with that said, Jaroslav Halak has the ability to give them decent goaltending. Halak should be the starter, and he’ll see lots of rubber.
Jaroslav Halák (Montreal Canadiens/NHL), Peter Budaj (Colorado Avalanche/NHL), Rastislav Staňa (Severstaľ Čerepovec/KHL)
Can Zdeno Chara play 40 minutes a game? If so, Slovakia will have a chance. Kidding aside, Chara along with Andrej Meszaros and Lubomir Visnovsky will lead the best grouping of defensemen that Slovakia has ever assembled.
Zdeno Chára (Boston Bruins/NHL), Milan Jurčina (Columbus Blue Jackets/NHL), Richard Lintner (Dinamo Minsk/KHL), Andrej Meszároš (Tampa Bay Lightning/NHL), Andrej Sekera (Buffalo Sabres/NHL), Ľubomír Višňovský (Edmonton Oilers/NHL), Martin Štrbák (HK MVD/KHL)
Ziggy Palffy? Didn’t he retire? Bartecko, Cibak, Stumpel, Satan, Zednik… Didn’t they all retire too? Well no, they’re all playing in various places in Europe in the twilight of their careers (except for Satan who isn’t playing anywhere at the moment, but apparently will get himself into shape by February). Other than Marian Gaborik (will he stay at the athlete’s village or the Vancouver Special that he bought?) and Marian Hossa, the Slovaks will be sending a very old group of forwards to Vancouver, whose best days are behind them. This will be the last kick at the can for most of them.
Ľuboš Bartečko (Bern/Švajč.), Branko Radivojevič, Martin Cibák (obaja Spartak Moskva/KHL), Pavol Demitra (Vancouver Canucks/NHL), Marián Gáborík (New York Rangers/NHL), Michal Handzuš (Los Angeles Kings/NHL), Marián Hossa (Chicago Blackhawks/NHL), Marcel Hossa (Dinamo Riga/KHL), Tomáš Kopecký (Chicago Blackhawks/NHL), Žigmund Pálffy (HK 36 Skalica/SR), Jozef Stümpel (Barys Astana/KHL), Miroslav Šatan (bez klubovej príslušnosti), Richard Zedník (Lokomotiv Jaroslavľ/KHL)