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International Tournaments Discuss international tournaments such as the World Juniors, Olympic hockey, and Ice Hockey World Championships, as they take place; or discuss past tournaments.

International Rivalries

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03-20-2013, 02:03 PM
  #1
Hasa92
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International Rivalries

What international rivalries there are in hockey? i know USA vs Canada, Finland vs Sweden, the Chezh vs the Slovaks and Russia/ Soviets vs pretty much everyone..?

But what other Rivalries are there in international tournaments, especially Outside of the "big 7"?

Denmark and Norway probably want to beat the Swedes the most and each other after that and maybe Finland as well.

Who do the Swiss consider their rival, the Germans? And what about the Austrians, Slovenians, Italians? Who hates the Latvians and is there a decent hockey nation
that doesn't hate the Russians?

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03-20-2013, 02:10 PM
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BalticWarrior
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Latvia vs Russia, no doubt we hate them with a passion(and they proabably hate us too) and they are the only "Big" team we have won 2 times.
After the win in 2000 WC when Latvia won Russia,Arturs Irbe said: "I have played these 33 years for this one game,and i would give up half my life for it"


Last edited by BalticWarrior: 03-20-2013 at 02:16 PM.
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03-20-2013, 02:23 PM
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Hasa92
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Originally Posted by Helo View Post
Latvia vs Russia, no doubt we hate them with a passion
I figured that you would have a rivalry with Russia but what about other countries, like Belarus? I bet you guys hate each other too.

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03-20-2013, 02:28 PM
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BalticWarrior
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Originally Posted by Hasa92 View Post
I figured that you would have a rivalry with Russia but what about other countries, like Belarus? I bet you guys hate each other too.
With Belarus its more of a friendly competition,than a rivalry,we just don`t have enough reasons to hate eachother.
Also i would like to add that 2nd biggest rivalry for us would be against Swedes,its probably one-sided but still,alot of people in Latvia just flat out don`t like swedes.

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03-20-2013, 04:01 PM
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Xokkeu
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Ukraine vs Russia

Although the Russians might not care much about it, and Ukraine is so bad that most people aren't going to invest themselves in a terrible team and program, the few people who work and follow Ukrainian hockey hate the Russians. The funny thing is that it's less about politics (most of the hockey is in the east of the country) and mostly about Russia poaching Ukraine's few talents.

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03-20-2013, 04:18 PM
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Slovakia and Hungary have some kind of politically-charged hatred don't they? I remember fans getting into fights at the World championships.

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03-21-2013, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Hasa92 View Post
Who do the Swiss consider their rival, the Germans?
I don't think Switzerland consider any team its rival. Game against Germany are usually huge because they are key games for a spot into the top 8, but so are games against Latvia, Norway and the likes.

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03-21-2013, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by EbencoyE View Post
Slovakia and Hungary have some kind of politically-charged hatred don't they? I remember fans getting into fights at the World championships.
There is a sizeable Hungarian population in Slovakia who feel discriminated against and who Hungary feels responsible for. Of course it's hard to have a legitimate sporting rivalry when one team is head and shoulders better than the other.

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03-21-2013, 02:53 PM
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Slovakia vs. Hungary

that's really serious rivality. Interesting is that Slovakian club Nove Zamky was joined to Hungarian MOL League. What I heard, management of Nove Zamky really appreciated their first season in this league.

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03-21-2013, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeez View Post
Slovakia vs. Hungary

that's really serious rivality. Interesting is that Slovakian club Nove Zamky was joined to Hungarian MOL League. What I heard, management of Nove Zamky really appreciated their first season in this league.
Considering the differences in level of the two teams and the fact that they have only played one meaningful game in recent memory, there is just no way you can speak of any kind of rivalry between these two countries.

Also, there is and has been pretty deep cooperation between Hungarians and Slovaks in hockey for years. There have been loads of Slovak coaches/players playing in Hungary and vice versa quite a few Hungarian young players have spent some of their development in Slovakia. Asides from Nové Zámky, there is a bunch of Hungarian teams playing in Slovak second U20 league this season.

I'd actually wager to say that the relationship between Slovaks and Hungarians is actually much better than in many other areas.

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03-21-2013, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Xokkeu View Post
There is a sizeable Hungarian population in Slovakia who feel discriminated against and who Hungary feels responsible for. Of course it's hard to have a legitimate sporting rivalry when one team is head and shoulders better than the other.
I wouldn't say head and shoulders better, they only beat Hungary 4-3 in 2009 which was the last time they played I believe.

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03-21-2013, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by EbencoyE View Post
I wouldn't say head and shoulders better, they only beat Hungary 4-3 in 2009 which was the last time they played I believe.
Lets put things in perspective


Hungary has not qualified for Olympic hockey since 1964, despite being able to use fully professional players against Western European amatuers.

Slovakia on the other hand, since independence has finished; 6,10, 13, 5, 4

Slovakia has two silvers, a bronze and a gold medal in the World Championships. They have never been relegated since winning the second division in 1995.

Hungary's highest finish since 1978 is 16th.

That was in the 2009 Worlds where they played Slovakia. They finished 0-6, with a -23 goal differential scoring half of their six goals in that one game against Slovakia. That was their first time in the highest division of the Worlds since 1939, when there was no relegation. Also coincidentally the last time Hungary won a game in the top level of the Worlds, against Belgium.

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03-21-2013, 04:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EbencoyE View Post
I wouldn't say head and shoulders better, they only beat Hungary 4-3 in 2009 which was the last time they played I believe.
On a goal 13 seconds before the end of the 3rd period no less. Though they best moment against Slovakia was when they actually defeated a Slovak team at a tournament, I'm not sure which year it was, but I think it was an U23 Slovak team. That said, I think that anybody who has a bit of sense in them recognises that that one game says about as much of the comparissone of level of hockey in the two country as Slovakia's win over Canada at WC last year speaks about the difference between the level of hockey in Slovakia and Canada.

As for Slovakia, its Hungarian minority and Hungary it is an issue that I believe doesnt belong here, because it is mainly a political issue and its not a sports issue (asides from football). There are lots of ethnic Hungarian sportsmen representing Slovakia in all sorts of events and its not a problem for almost anyone. I already mentioned the kind of cooperation that exits between the two countries in hockey, for a sport in which Hungary is the most advanced look for handball where a significant part of the Slovak national team usually plays in the Hungarian league and he top Slovak team has uncompetitively played in the Hungarian league. If there is any kind of sports rivalry between the two countries in team sports, you'd easier find it in handball, though once again one team is on a higher level than the other (this time Hungary).

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03-22-2013, 02:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Xokkeu View Post
Hungary has not qualified for Olympic hockey since 1964, despite being able to use fully professional players against Western European amatuers.
Professional hockey in Hungary is a very recent thing. Actually it's a pretty recent thing in all of Europe.

Quote:
Slovakia on the other hand, since independence has finished; 6,10, 13, 5, 4

Slovakia has two silvers, a bronze and a gold medal in the World Championships. They have never been relegated since winning the second division in 1995.
Ok? Obviously Hungary hasn't been a regular at the elite level, but "head and shoulders" to me, is like comparing Canada and Mongolia. Hungary is still a solid Division 1A team, which are good hockey teams who can occasionally beat elite level teams, even if they aren't elite level regulars.

Quote:
Hungary's highest finish since 1978 is 16th.

That was in the 2009 Worlds where they played Slovakia. They finished 0-6, with a -23 goal differential scoring half of their six goals in that one game against Slovakia. That was their first time in the highest division of the Worlds since 1939, when there was no relegation. Also coincidentally the last time Hungary won a game in the top level of the Worlds, against Belgium.
Which is proof that Hungary is a lot better these days than they have been in the past.

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03-22-2013, 02:02 AM
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Originally Posted by slovakiasnextone View Post
That said, I think that anybody who has a bit of sense in them recognises that that one game says about as much of the comparissone of level of hockey in the two country as Slovakia's win over Canada at WC last year speaks about the difference between the level of hockey in Slovakia and Canada.
I would put Slovakian and Canadian hockey at about the same level myself. They're both solid elite level nations after all, and both compete for medals in practically every tournament.

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03-22-2013, 05:21 AM
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Just my personal experience, but for what it's worth, during the 2011 World Championship I attended the Slovakia-Czech Rep. game and the guy seating next to me was an ethnic Hungarian who grew up in Bratislava, and he was chearing for Slovakia like crazy.

It's definitely not a definitive proof of anything, but I'm enclined to think there is no tension with the Hungarian minority as far as hockey is concerned.

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03-22-2013, 02:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EbencoyE View Post
Professional hockey in Hungary is a very recent thing. Actually it's a pretty recent thing in all of Europe.



Ok? Obviously Hungary hasn't been a regular at the elite level, but "head and shoulders" to me, is like comparing Canada and Mongolia. Hungary is still a solid Division 1A team, which are good hockey teams who can occasionally beat elite level teams, even if they aren't elite level regulars.



Which is proof that Hungary is a lot better these days than they have been in the past.

Head and shoulders is basically an NHL team compared to an AHL team. Slovakia is in a different league, literally, than Hungary.

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03-29-2013, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Helo View Post
Latvia vs Russia, no doubt we hate them with a passion(and they proabably hate us too) and they are the only "Big" team we have won 2 times.
After the win in 2000 WC when Latvia won Russia,Arturs Irbe said: "I have played these 33 years for this one game,and i would give up half my life for it"
That's the problem with you, guys. Nobody hates you. You just don't want to realize. Actually nobody in Russia really cares much about the games against Latvia. I mean it in a good way, not that we don't respect you. There's just no rivalry whatsoever on our side.

Btw, if you think about it you know WHAT Irbe actually meant.

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03-29-2013, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Xokkeu View Post
Ukraine vs Russia

Although the Russians might not care much about it, and Ukraine is so bad that most people aren't going to invest themselves in a terrible team and program, the few people who work and follow Ukrainian hockey hate the Russians. The funny thing is that it's less about politics (most of the hockey is in the east of the country) and mostly about Russia poaching Ukraine's few talents.
Now Ukraine has a team in the KHL. Their "problem" is actually not the talent drain to Russia. It's football.

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03-29-2013, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Hasa92 View Post
What international rivalries there are in hockey? i know USA vs Canada, Finland vs Sweden, the Chezh vs the Slovaks and Russia/ Soviets vs pretty much everyone..?

But what other Rivalries are there in international tournaments, especially Outside of the "big 7"?

Denmark and Norway probably want to beat the Swedes the most and each other after that and maybe Finland as well.

Who do the Swiss consider their rival, the Germans? And what about the Austrians, Slovenians, Italians? Who hates the Latvians and is there a decent hockey nation
that doesn't hate the Russians?
Why would that be?

There are only two real rivalries for Russia. It's with Canada for obvious reasons and with the Czechs. The Czechoslovakians basically taught other Europeans and the Soviets hockey. When the hockey program was started in the USSR they used to learn from the Czechoslovakians in thiose days.

After that it was the battle of two systems. The soviet speed and offence against tight and suffocating czech defensive system.

It's cooled off a bit now because of a somewhat decline in Czech hockey in recent years which is a sad thing. We need more Jagrs!

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03-29-2013, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atas2000 View Post
Why would that be?

There are only two real rivalries for Russia. It's with Canada for obvious reasons and with the Czechs. The Czechoslovakians basically taught other Europeans and the Soviets hockey. When the hockey program was started in the USSR they used to learn from the Czechoslovakians in thiose days.

After that it was the battle of two systems. The soviet speed and offence against tight and suffocating czech defensive system.

It's cooled off a bit now because of a somewhat decline in Czech hockey in recent years which is a sad thing. We need more Jagrs!
From Czechoslovak POV, the rivalry was more about politics than some "battle of systems", like here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czechoslovak_Hockey_Riots

It still is, to some extent, although probably only with the oldest players. For example this video from Slovak locker room after the semis in 2002. The players already knew that they would play against Russia in the finals and you can hear one of the players (I think it was Radoslav Hecl) shout: "****ing Russian ******! They've been ****ing us for 40 years, now we will **** them!" About 0:50 and 1:07


I'm sure it is similar in Czech Republic.

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03-29-2013, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by ebis View Post
From Czechoslovak POV, the rivalry was more about politics than some "battle of systems", like here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czechoslovak_Hockey_Riots

It still is, to some extent, although probably only with the oldest players. For example this video from Slovak locker room after the semis in 2002. The players already knew that they would play against Russia in the finals and you can hear one of the players (I think it was Radoslav Hecl) shout: "****ing Russian ******! They've been ****ing us for 40 years, now we will **** them!" About 0:50 and 1:07


I'm sure it is similar in Czech Republic.
Definitely not that way on the russian side. Ppl need to get rid of their complexes. It's pretty laughable regarding how little attention Russians pay to those issues and how little knowledge of the real political background the ppl having those issues with Russians have.

btw, the guy in the vid should hide under some stone and be ashamed.

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03-30-2013, 02:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Atas2000 View Post
Why would that be?

There are only two real rivalries for Russia. It's with Canada for obvious reasons and with the Czechs.
I know that most Russians don't care about most of the teams they play against expect if they are capable of winning them.

But i believe that a lot of teams especially ex-soviet countries consider Russia their rival, some may even consider them their main rival.

I live in Finland and Russia is our biggest rival just after Sweden.

There was USA vs Soviets back in the time of the Cold War, im not sure but i could still imagine that at least the American hockey fans consider Russia their rival with Canada of course.

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03-30-2013, 07:20 AM
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Czech republic vs Russia is pretty damn good rivalry, a lot of matches are always very emotional, exciting with a lot of battles, hits, scrums, trash talking. Also Czechs vs Slovaks is obviously good rivalry. Here in cze most of us really hates Russian players and I personally don't like any Russian players also.

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03-30-2013, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Hasa92 View Post
I know that most Russians don't care about most of the teams they play against expect if they are capable of winning them.

But i believe that a lot of teams especially ex-soviet countries consider Russia their rival, some may even consider them their main rival.

I live in Finland and Russia is our biggest rival just after Sweden.

There was USA vs Soviets back in the time of the Cold War, im not sure but i could still imagine that at least the American hockey fans consider Russia their rival with Canada of course.
For the U.S. I think it depends on the person's age. Older fans probably consider Russia our biggest rival, especially if they have memories of the Red Machine and the Cold War era.

For younger fans it is probably Canada - 96 World cup, Salt Lake Olympics, Vancouver Olympics, and the many great battles at the World Juniors. Not to mention the obvious proximity and close relations between American and Canadian hockey.

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