Six Florida Panthers players will be taking part in the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation’s (IIHF) World Championship tournament for their home countries. The tournament, taking place in Stockholm, Sweden and Helsinki, Finland, began today and runs through 9.
The following will participate: forwards Nick Bjugstad (USA), Tomas Fleischmann (Czech Republic), Marcel Goc (Germany), Tomas Kopecky (Slovakia), goalie Jacob Markstrom (Sweden) and defenseman Brian Campbell (Canada).
Four players took part in the action today as the tournament started. Two (Kopecky, Fleischmann) were on winning teams (Slovakia over France, 6-2; and Czech Republic over Belarus, 2-0, respectively) while two (Goc, Markstrom) were on losing teams (Germany fell to Finland, 4-3 in OT; and Sweden fell to Switzerland, 3-2, respectively). The United States (Bjugstad) and Canada (Campbell) begin competition tomorrow against Austria and Denmark, respectively.
It’s a good opportunity for these guys to play for their countries, but hopefully there won’t be any significant injuries (any injuries at all) that will keep them out of the Panthers lineup next season.