Many European leagues took play breaks recently so that people could participate in the Channel One Cup or the Arosa Challenge. Unfortunately, the Czech team in the Channel One Cup–with David Krejci among the NHL players in the lineup–did not do well at all. Krejci was scoreless throughout all three of the games in the tournament and the Czech Republic lost each one: 3-2 to Finland on Dec. 13, 6-0 to Russia on Dec. 15 and 4-0 to Sweden on Dec. 16. Russia’s team had a lot of firepower with guys like Pavel Datsyuk, Alexander Radulov, Ilya Kovalchuk, Evgeni Malkin and Alexander Ovechkin in the lineup. Datsyuk completed a hat trick in that 6-0 game and Russia later went on to win the Channel One Cup title.
Now, as leagues like the KHL, Swiss NLA and Czech Tipsport Extraliga prepare to come back from their breaks, other leagues that didn’t really take long pauses for Channel One and Arosa–or ones that had shorter gaps in play–continued to play. Here’s what the Boston Bruins in Europe did this past week:
Dennis Seidenberg and Adler Mannheim took down ERC Ingolstadt 5-0 on Dec. 16 as team newbie and Buffalo Sabres captain Jason Pominville scored a hat trick. (This came not long after Adler allowed a hat trick by another NHLer and former teammate of Seidenberg’s, Blake Wheeler, on Dec. 9.)
Johnny Boychuk continues to play with Austria’s EC Red Bull Salzburg, but did not score in their 4-2 loss on Dec. 11 or their 6-4 win on Dec. 16. However, another NHL veteran, Rob Schremp, has been very productive lately. He had an assist in that 4-2 loss and then a goal and two helpers during that 6-4 victory.
My suspicions that Chris Kelly had left his Swiss team–he hadn’t appeared on game lineups since Dec. 2–were confirmed when he surfaced on the lineups for the RBC Play Hockey Charity Challenge. Somewhere in there, he must have quietly come back to North America! Who knows if he will stay, look to return to HC Red Ice or try to find a different European team after the challenge, though?
Bruins who returned to North America for their teams’ tournament-related breaks are heading back now. Over the next few days, their Euro teams will hit the ice again. Here’s the schedule of returns.
Dec. 18: Rich Peverley, Tyler Seguin, Patrice Bergeron, Daniel Paille
Dec. 19: David Krejci, Andrew Ference, Anton Khudobin
Dec. 21: Zdeno Chara
There’s no word yet on if Tuukka Rask, who’s been seen practicing in Boston and recently did a signing event in Providence, will return to HC Plzen.