Thread: Slovakia: Tipsport Extraliga 2011/2012
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11-18-2011, 07:31 AM
is the Legend
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Iīd cool down the optimism if I were you....same goes for the media and the other fans....just last week the league sucked and now a few players win something internationally and suddenly itīs all good.....I know that it was nce to finally win something again and to see those boys play their hearts out there, but please letīs be realistic...
Well, you know,I posted here thread "Trends in Slovnaft Extraliga" 2 years ago... I did it, because I felt like some little things started to work better. I didn't say: "suddenly itīs all good." About 4-5 years ago I was pesimistic too. Now I think I'm a realist. I doubt, we ever will be in a position, we were in 2000-2002.

Iīve seen the game between Dukla and Košice only on TV and itīs true that it was a very exciting game played in a high level tempo and it was even of a higher quality than most play-off games in the last few seasons. Iīve also seen a game of an almost equally high quality between Zvolen and Skalica live. And there has been a few more of such games this season. However for every such game you have at least 5 if not 10 games of underaverage to really bad quality.
I'm HK Poprad fan and usually I watch only the games of Poprad. There were several games of other teams this season, I watched all 3 periods, because it engaged my attention. E.g. Zvolen - Slovan... That's something, that didn't happen to me in previous seasons.

Yes, some of the league players showed at the DC that they can play at a higher and faster level, but with most of them itīs not like they actually do it in the league night in and night out. Part of it I guess can be attributed to what seems like a common trait of us Slovaks- laziness and we just donīt know how to compete all the time (Iīm not blaming others, Iīm guilty of this myself and Iīm not saying this applies to everyone and single of us), but Iīd also say that if it wasnīt possible to bet on the results of the preiods of the league games it could do wonders to the level of some games, ditto to the players of all teams actually seeing their salaries regularly.
OK, I agree most of the players from Extraliga can't do it night in and night out. However tell me, why these flashes of brilliance didn't show players from Extraliga e.g. 4 years ago??
Talking about laziness as a common trait of Slovaks... Man, that's a stupid statement. I think a lot of people from eastern Slovakia would kick your ass, if you tell it.

I donīt know to which extent Vujtek actually believes his statements about the Czech and Slovak leagues, but you have to realize that working for SZĽH as a foreigner he is in no easy position to say the Czech league is much better and the Slovak one sucks, especially not after some players from Slvoak league perform well on the international stage. Of course the Czech league has itīs really good and some pretty bad games (and some of its games may have been worse than the Slovak league games), but not only with the level of play, but also with the infrastructure is lights ahead of the Slovak league. And unless its quality sinks greatly it will be so probably forever. Letīs not lie to ourselves even with a tip top development system Slovakia just canīt have a league that could compete with the European leagues because of the financial situation (unlike Switzerland whose development is still lagging behind the top European countries, but who can with its money afford to have most of its young talent stay at home and also bring high level imports and also unlike the Czech league we donīt have so many almsot retiring high level players that come home before the end of their career and most of ours will rather play abroad until they start limping than step on SK Extraliga ice). Iīm not saying that the league canīt be improved, but for the players itīs always gonna be seen just as a bridge to the better European or NA leagues.
Czech league was much better (is better and will be better, no doubt) and the Slovak one sucked badly a few years ago.
However Slovak league has improved a little bit: more young players, 2 comfort stadiums, a little bit repaired stadiums in Poprad, Skalica, Zvolen and Žilina, some high level players (Pálffy, Šatan, Suchý), that returned before the end of their careers.
And I agree, for the players our league always gonna be seen as a bridge. That's not bad...

As for the Šatan interview, I donīt remember it exactly, but I seem to recall that more than about quality he was actually talking about the speed of the league being higher in previous seasons. Which of course has to do with the higher numbers of young players in the league, but letīs be honest with ourselves higher speed doesnīt necessarily equal a much higher quality. The quality might be somewhat higher than in previous seasons (which I suspect also has to do with the number of teams falling down), but it is far away from itīs times when it had lots of players who grew up not only in the Czechoslovak development system, but also in the Czechoslovak league and since it was bringing up talents like Hossa or Gáborík.
An article with Šatan statement is here:
As for quality... Nobody says, league is in a condition such as in 90s!!! League improved a bit since 2007-2008. It was real bottom.

With all the rumors of especially Slovan looking somewhere different than Slovakia for the future and with Košice probably joining them in this, what I see somewhere down the road the best possibility of our league is becoming kind of a development league somewhere down the road- itīs still just a fantasy though.

But just looking at the average age for the league, some teams ar already headed there (not because they want, but because the financial situation forces them to):
Poprad 27.71
Košice 26.69
Banská Bystrica 26.20
Žilina 26.18
Nitra 26.08
Slovan 25.68
Skalica 25.08
Zvolen 24.66
Martin 24.50
Trenčín 24.48

And for most teams it gets even lower when you donīt count the foreigners (30 Czechs, 5 Swedes, 4 Finns, 3 Russians, 1 Ukrainian, 1 Latvian, 1 Austrian, 1 Dane and 1 Slovenian currently):

Poprad 28.38
Košice 26.26
Banská Bystrica 25.35
Žilina 24.92
Nitra 24.41
Slovan 25.09
Skalica 24.68
Zvolen 23.64
Martin 23.96
Trenčín 23.52
You said it, the league has become a development league once again. It's good. Extraliga was some kind of a development league even in 90s. Players such as Hossa, Gáborík, and especially such as Višňovský, Sekeráš, or Országh grew up in here! Of course now the quality is lower, but it's not a disaster like in 2007-2008...
As for Slovan and Košice looking for other options. It's in the biggest interest of Dukla Trenčín (and even in the biggest interest of Slovak National team) to be involved in that. Development system of Dukla would die in a league without Slovan and Košice. It's similar for HK Poprad.

One more thing we could do is not just for this league, but also for 1.liga and Sovak hockey overall is finally disband the Hk Orange team. Undepending of how good/bad idea it was at the start of the season, itīs execution this year is a really bad joke- I donīt think they have played a single game with a full line-up this season, appearantly the league teams have no interest in sending their U20 players they could have at least some use of there, and now after a bad performance Tomko seems to have realized that some of his players suck and sent them home getting others a month before the big tourney. So much wasted money for this, just have those players play for their Extraliga teams or loan them out to 1.liga teams and scout them and have trainign camps often or just get them together to play a few 1.liga games like the Finns do or at least used to if you want it so bad. Use that wasted money to pay for transportation in order to establish a nationwide U16 league or to have some of the younger NTs get some good international competition in NA, Sweden or Russia or something, almost anything would be better....
I agree, this year it's bad, really bad... However I disagree with your statement, Extraliga has become younger only because of the financial crisis...
In my opinion under 20 HK Orange team has had a big impact, the league is younger. You say it's a waste of money... I say this year it's like that. However it's the result of this project, teams rather keep their young players (Daňo, Mikúš, Murček). 4-5 years ago Extraliga's clubs didn't get a chance almost on any young player... HK Orange project changed it.

Originally Posted by slovakiasnextone View Post
Talking about Slovak hockey as a whole, Iīve read an interview with Róbert Švehla where he said that they were going to introduce their first improvement measures for Slovak hockey in November, since itīs already the second half of the month I donīt know whether theyīre just not making it public or something.....I donīt know, maybe itīs very naive, but I still have some hope for Robo to become kind of our Tommy Boustedt.....
Yeah, I agree Robo Švehla is the man, who can help to our hockey. I believe even people such as Vujtek, Oremus and Sýkora are the right men... Not sure about Nemeček

Last edited by Krotak: 11-18-2011 at 08:01 AM.
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