New York Rangers won the second of two historic NHL ice hockey games at Prague’s O2 Arena on Sunday night. Rangers beat Tampa Bay Lightning 2:1, the same result as in the two clubs' first encounter on Saturday, which was the first NHL match ever played in the Czech Republic. Commentators agreed that Sunday’s game was far superior to the season opener, both in terms of play and atmosphere. The newspaper Sport reported that there was a high chance NHL games could be played in the Czech Republic again next year.
In Sports News this Monday: history is made with the first NHL games ever held in the Czech Republic taking place in Prague, New York Rangers twice beating Tampa Bay Lightning to get their season off to a perfect start; Tomáš Berdych wins his fourth ATP title and is once again the highest ranked Czech men’s tennis player; and Mladá Boleslav go top in the Czech football league, for 24 hours at least.
Some disappointment has been expressed over the first NHL ice hockey game ever held in the Czech Republic. New York Rangers beat Tampa Bay Lightning 2:1 in a curtain-raiser for the new NHL season at Prague’s O2 Arena in front of almost 17,000 fans on Saturday evening. However, Czech media outlets reported that there was little atmosphere at the game and, with a number of new players on each team, the standard of hockey was not particularly high. Tampa’s Czech forward Václav Prospal said afterwards that fans at NHL games normally did not cheer on their teams as much as supporters in the Czech Extraliga; Prospal said he himself was not disappointed with the atmosphere, and had not expected two sets of hard-core fans. The second game in the two-match series takes place on Sunday evening.
The first NHL ice hockey game ever held in the Czech Republic began at 6 pm on Saturday at Prague’s O2 Arena. Tampa Bay Lightning faced New York Rangers in the first of two matches, with the second being held on Sunday. The cheapest tickets were priced at CZK 1,990 (USD 111). NHL officials decided to hold the the first games of the 2008-2009 season in Prague and the Swedish capital Stockholm in order to increase the international profile of the North American league.
Jaromír Jágr, who plays for Russia’s Omsk, scored a winning goal in a Continental Hockey League’s match against Balshikha on Monday, making it the seventh consecutive victory of his team. After having registered two assists, he netted his club’s fifth goal in the 54th minute, setting the final score at 5:4.
In Sports News: after not scoring twice in a game for over two years, Milan Baroš does it three times in a week for new club Galatasaray; Slavia lead the Czech league – but who will be top going into next weekend’s derby at Sparta?; Olympic shooting champion Kateřina Emmons takes a career break to have her first child; and Czech ice hockey fans look forward to a historic first – the start of the NHL season in Prague.
Czech hockey star Jaromír Jágr set a new personal record for fastest scored goal. In action in the Continental League he scored just 31 seconds into the first period against Khabarovsk. He broke a league record set earlier in the week by seven seconds. Jágr’s Avangard Omsk went on to win the game by 4:0.
Football striker Milan Baroš hits stride with Galatasaray Istanbul while Petr Čech’s Chelsea draw 1:1 in a nail-biter against Manchester United; Slavia goes top in the domestic hockey league while Jaromír Jágr regains form in Siberia; the 2008 Paralympics wrap up with the Czechs clinching 27 medals.
In Sports News this Monday: the Czech Republic have a couple of injury problems ahead of their first World Cup qualifier, but the good news is Marek Jankulovski is fit; former Czech manager Karel Bruckner gets off to a flying start in his new job as Austria beat France 3:1; the Czech Republic has taken four medals, including two golds, at the Paralympics in Beijing; and there are 12 members of the legendary 1998 Olympic winning team in the Czech ice hockey league this season.
The Czech Republic is one of five candidates for the World Ice Hockey Championships in 2014, it was announced on Wednesday. The Czechs, who unsuccessfully applied to hold the contest in 2013, are up against Belarus, Ukraine, Hungary and Latvia for 2014’s championships. The Czech Republic last hosted the tournament in 2004, and should the 2014 bid succeed, then the competition would be staged in Prague for the 10th time in history. The host of the 2014 championships will be announced next year in Switzerland.
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