Coyotes at the WJC

By Russell Brooks

Fredrik Sjostrom, Sweden – Fredrik has not been given a shot to show his talent at the World Junior Championships and his statistics have illustrated just that. Sjostrom has only 2 penalty minutes with no goals or assists in the five games he has played so far. Sjostrom has been limited to fourth line play and 13th forward duties with virtually no time on the power play and penalty kill. Fredrik will only improve and gain experience from being at the Championships when he goes back to the Calgary Hitmen.

5 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, 2 PIM, +2, 6 SOG

Ruslan Zainullan, Russia – Ruslan came over in the Nikolai Khabibulin trade from Tampa Bay and has been put in the same position that Fredrik Sjostrom has been in with Sweden. Ruslan through the quarterfinals does not have a registered shot on goal which is something he will need to address if he is to have success in his professional career. Zainullan has only one assist and 2 penalty minutes in the five games through the quarterfinals of the Championships so far. As with Sjostrom, Zainullan will gain nothing but positive experience from this.

5 GP, 0 G, 1 A, 1 P, 2 PIM, -1, 0 SOG

Martin Podelsak, Czech Republic – Martin started off the tournament playing on the 2nd line along side Frantisek Lukes and Miloslav Horava. Martin has really been a disappointment at the Championships. Podelsak hasn’t registered a point in the tournament and has really disappointed the hometown fans in the Czech Republic. Podelsak is a plus one and has four shots on goal. Podelsak had really high expectations going into this tournament and has not been able to live up to them. If he is to jump to another level, he will need to display his emotions and play a full 60 minute game.

5 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, 0 PIM, +1, 8 SOG

Frantisek Lukes, Czech Republic – Frantisek started off the tournament playing along side Podelsak and has been getting less ice time every game and has been moved down first to the 3rd line and now he is receiving very limited ice time on the 4th line. Lukes came into the tournament with not as high expectations as Podelsak, but he has been a disappointment as well. Lukes is a plus 1, but has not earned a point in any of the five games he has played in yet.

5 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, 0 PIM, +1, 4 SOG

Beat Forster, Switzerland – Beat has played well in five games so far. He has been a big surprise being paired on first line defense along with Rene Back. Forster has been a real physical surprise for the Swiss and has earned two assists and ten penalty minutes so far. Beat was also sucker-punched by Alexander Svitov of Russia during their last game. Beat has received considerable amount of time on power play and penalty kill along with even strength. Jakob Kolliker, Head coach of team Switzerland has been very pleased with Forster play on the blue-line this tournament.

5 GP, 0 G, 2 A, 2 P, 10 PIM, -2, 10 SOG

Severin Blindenbacher, Switzerland – Severin has played real well during the Championships. He has been paired with Tim Ramholt on defense and has played well on power play and a little penalty kill. Severin won’t ear a lot of points when he plays but he will be physical and plays a similar type of style as does Beat Forster. Severin is a plus three and has four penalty minutes in the five games he has played so far.

5 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, 4 PIM, +3, 4 SOG

Sergey Kocharov contributed to the article.