Coyotes at Sochi: Hanzal
Coyotes forward Martin Hanzal is playing for Czech Republic at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
OLYMPIC EXPERIENCE: This is Hanzal's first appearance at the Olympics.
OTHER INTERNATIONAL EXPERIENCE:
|Photo by Norm Hall.|
2008: Collected three assists in six games for the Czech Republic at the IIHF World Championship in Halifax and Quebec City.
2007: Represented Czech Republic at the IIHF World Junior Championship in Sweden…Finished with 2-1-3 in six games.
2006: Registered two assists in six games for Czech Republic at IIHF World Junior Championship in British Columbia.
2005: Posted 4-3-2 and was a plus-7 in seven games at IIHF U-18 World Championship in the Czech Republic…Was named to the tournament All-Star Team.
FUN FACT: Hanzal has vivid memories of celebrating with his parents when Czech Republic won the gold medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics.
HE SAID IT:
Do you like the bigger ice surface?
“We’ll see. It’s totally different hockey and it’s a different strategy and everything changes: penalty kill, power play, it’s all different. It all depends on the coaches and the style and it’s all in the strategy.”
On playing for his country:“It’s really a big honor for me, especially in the Olympics because I would call it the best tournament because the NHL stops and you have all these superstars playing in a tournament and competing for a gold medal. I think it’s probably the best tournament in the world and it’s definitely a huge honor for me and I’m really proud.”
On Czech Republic's chances to win the gold medal:
“Everybody has a chance. I would call the top 4 - Canada, U.S., Sweden and Russia. But that’s the beauty of it; if you lose one game in the quarterfinals you’re out, so it makes it more exciting that everybody has the same chance. I remember in Nagano in1998 – the Czechs were outsiders and they won the gold medal so I think (being an underdog) may be a little better because you don’t have that pressure on your shoulders.”
COYOTES SOCHI CENTRAL