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Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Zagreb Bears To Play In "2014 Spengler Cup'" &...6 Medals For Croatia At European Taekwondo Championships

 Zagreb Bears home game at Zagreb Arena.

I wasn't planning on doing anything sports for a while, especially anything hockey related for quite some time. However, this below news is really something. The Spengler Cup is a very prestigious and is often cited as the oldest invitational ice hockey tournament in the world. The Zagreb Bears (Medveščak Zagreb) this past year completed their rookie season in the KHL. Many expected the team to finish in the basement, since they would be playing against some teams with much bigger payrolls and budgets, and even former NHLers. However, they proved everyone wrong and made it into the playoffs, even clinching a spot with a few games to spare.

Also, on this side of the pond, this annual hockey tournament is always broadcast live on TSN, which means I'll be able to watch them play live over here. (People are probably more familiar with the tournament as that hockey tournament in Europe where the jersey's all have sponsors logos on them) All this will mean more exposure, people will wonder and learn more about who the Zagreb Bears are, where they are from etc. (Hey Phyillis, there's this team playing on the box from that them there Croatia country eh?, is my toast ready yet?, make sure you to use the good margarine eh) To make it even more interesting, the coach and a number of the players on the team are Canadian and Croatian, even Canadian with Croatian descent, as well as other European nationalities. Great news overall and another step up in the hockey world. Much more info about the Zagreb Bears hockey club and hockey in Croatia at the previous post links below and of course at the teams website

The short addition below the hockey story is about the recent success of the Croatian National Taekwondo Team, which I might as well throw in too. We always seem to do good at taekwondo, karate, judo and martial arts competitions for some reason. European Championships, World Championships and even Olympics. Ana Zaninović won gold again in her category, as well as her twin sister Lucija Zaninović in her category.....

Great news from Davos: The Bears at the Spengler Cup!

Medvescak's opponents in the Spengler Cup will be Geneve-Servette, Team Canada, Salavat Yulaev, Jokerit Helsinki and HC Davos.


The Bears are making history once again! Just a few days after celebrating their first 'birthday' in the Kontinental Hockey League, some incredible news came from Davos - Medvescak will play in the prestigious Spengler Cup, which will be held in December 2014 in Davos. Medvescak's gift for their one-year anniversary in the KHL may have come a few days late, but that makes it no less valuable. For sure!

"I'm proud that we've managed to make this happen. This is big recognition for our club, for everything that we've achieved with our partners, sponsors, and fans over the past few years - first the KHL and now the Spengler Cup. I'm glad that the Cup's organizers recognized the value of our work and our club and gave us this incredible sports honour!", said Medvescak's president Damir Gojanovic at the announcement that the club will perform in the Spengler Cup.

This will be Zagreb's Bears' first time taking part in this tournament, and their opponents will be Swiss A-leaguers and last year's Cup winners HC Geneve-Servette, Team Canada (comprised heavily of Canadian players who play in Europe), the KHL's Salavat Yulaev from Ufa, Finland's Jokerit Helsinki (who will be part of the KHL in 2014-15), and home team HC Davos.

''The 18-time Croatian Champion will impress the Spengler Cup fans'', said Fredi Pargätzi, the president of the Spengler Cup's organizing committee, upon the announcement of Medvescak's participation.

The Spengler Cup is an international hockey tournament that has had a long tradition since 1923, and along with the Stanley Cup is the oldest championship in the world. The Cup is played for every year in Davos, Switzerland, in the time between Christmas and New Year. It is organized by A-leaguers Davos, and 2014 will see its 88th edition. Only teams that are invited can take part, and six teams fight for the trophy. Throughout all of the years of the Spengler Cup, which got its name from doctor Carl Spengler, numerous clubs from around the world have taken part, and the most wins go to the home team: Davos-15, followed by Team Canada-12.

2013/14 inaugural KHL season promo.

Unlike Medvescak, who are making their debut at the Spengler, all of the other teams are well acquainted with the traditional competition in Davos. Jokerit, the five-time Finnish champions have taken part in the Spengler Cup six times, the last being in 2003. This will be Geneve-Servette's third Spengler, and the same for Salavat. In 2007 Salavat played in the finals against Team Canada, but the trophy went to the Canadians. Team Canada will be playing for the 31st time in a row, while Davos, who have 30 Swiss championship titles, have been there since the very beginning.

Information about game schedules and ticket will be available soon.


Previous Posts: croatian-national-hockey-team-surprises-iihf
















Scandinavian and Croatian Teams


HC Genève-Servette, Team Canada, HC Salavat Yulaev Ufa, Jokerit Helsinki, Medvescak Zagreb (photo) and Hockey Club Davos are the Spengler Cup teams for 2014. Once again, the organizers are able to present an illustrious line-up of teams.

Never before has the organizing committee, under the guidance of President Fredi Pargätzi, been able to present the participating teams at such an early stage. Especially pleasing is that HC Genève-Servette wishes to defend their title of the previous year. The Team from western Switzerland not only shined at the Spengler Cup, but also in the Swiss Hockey League by reaching the semi-finals. The Genève-Servette Team will surely be a candidate for a top ranking at this years tournament as well.

In constructive collaboration with the KHL Three teams from the KHL will fight the Swiss for the winner`s trophy. This is a combination, which was allowed by the excellent partnership between the KHL and the Spengler Cup organization. «I count myself extraordinary lucky about the brilliant relationship and the constructive collaboration between the KHL and the Spengler Cup organization. The KHL is supporting us greatly for years now. We appreciate this support very much», said Fredi Pargätzi. The KHL will be represented by the teams of Medvescak Zagreb (Croatia), Jokerit Helsinki (Finland) and Salavat Yulaey Ufa (Russia).

Behind the scenes with fans. More videos at

Recap of their dynamic first season in the KHL. Team, KHL and even a few world records were broken along the way.

After a 8 year break with a scandinavian team again. As a newcomer in the KHL, Medvescak Zagreb became in the first season to the surprise of many experts to a constant (6th place in the Western Division of the KHL). The OC-President Fredi Pargätzi is confident that: «the 18-time Croatian Champion will impress the Spengler Cup fans». Eight years after Mora IK`s participation, a further Scandinavian team will compete for the Spengler Cup title. Jokerit Helsinki is familiar with the Spengler Cup, participating a total of six times - the last time in 2003. A new era will begin during the 2014/15 Season for the 6-time Finnish Champion who enjoys a cult status in their home country.

It is the first Finnish team to participate in the KHL. The third KHL team, HC Salavat Yulaev Ufa, will be participating for their third time at the Spengler Cup in Davos. This top team from Russia (KHL Champion in 2011) made it to the Spengler Cup finals in 2007 where they succumbed to Team Canada. Speaking of which, the Canadians will once again participate in the Spengler Cup for the 31st time in succession. Ever since, the Canadians inspire the crowd with attractive ice hockey and are therefore one of the drawing cards of the Spengler Cup.

Rounding off the participating teams is Hockey Club Davos. The champion record-holder of the Swiss National League A and record-holder of the Spengler Cup title is presently re-building their team. Experienced players are being replaced by younger hot-shots. Nevertheless, their chances of reaching a top ranking at the 2014 Spengler Cup are intact.

A Breath of Fresh Air

The 2014 Spengler Cup: A good mix of tradition and a breath of fresh air. With Finland and Croatia, there are two new nations fighting for the honor of a place on the Spengler Cup Winner`s List. «We are proud to present the participating teams and look forward to suspense-filled games», OC President Fredi Pargätzi is quoted as saying, as he looks forward to the 88th Spengler Cup with great anticipation.

Croats win 6 medals at European Taekwondo Championships in Baku








Croatia's Ana Zaninovic won the European title in the women's -53 kg taekwondo final in Baku on Sunday, beating Kim Ekaterina of Russia 10-8.

This was the sixth medal for Croatia on the last day of the European Taekwondo Championships in Azerbaijan.


On Friday, Ana's sister, Lucija Zaninovic, won her third consecutive European title in the women's -49 kg taekwondo final, beating Yasmine Aziez of France 5-4.

Also, Iva Rados of Croatia bagged a gold at this championship in the women's -73 kg.

The remaining three medals for Croatia are two silvers and a bronze

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