Rest a priority as Canada prepares for semifinal against South Korea

Canadian Paralympic Committee

May 02, 2019

‘’We’ll just be working on a couple pieces of our game that need to be cleaned up''



OSTRAVA, Czech Republic – After three games in four days in a sport as tough as Para ice hockey, it’s hardly surprising that rest is a priority for Team Canada as it prepares for its semifinal against South Korea on Friday at the 2019 World Para Ice Hockey Championships. 

A new tournament format that puts the stronger teams like Canada and the U.S. in the same pool probably means there are more aching muscles and bruises to mend than usual before Friday’s semis games.

In the preliminary round, the U.S. finished first in Group A with a perfect 3-0 mark, followed by the Canadians at 2-1, South Korea at 1-2 and Norway at 0-3. In Group B, the host Czechs were a perfect 3-0 with Italy at 2-1, Sweden 1-2 and Japan 0-3.

Canada, the defending champions, lost its opening game 3-1 to the U.S. in another high tempo and rugged battle. The Canadians then romped to a 14-2 win over Norway before concluding with a 4-0 victory over the hard-hitting Koreans. 

‘’Lots of rest and lots of recovery,’’ said Canadian forward Dominic Cozzolino about the next couple of days for the Canadians. ‘’We have to make sure we’re hydrated, make sure our bodies are feeling good, and that we are keeping a positive mindset so we are ready to play our game.’’

Head coach Ken Babey was delighted with how his squad stayed calm, cool and collected under some frustrating circumstances against the Koreans on Tuesday, particularly in regard to chippy play and outstanding goaltending.

‘’We’ll just be working on a couple pieces of our game that need to be cleaned up,’’ said Babey. ‘’We’ll be practicing that as we get ready for the semifinals to have another good game, and we hope to build every game and get better.”

In Wednesday’s quarterfinals, the Koreans defeated Italy 6-2 and the Czechs blanked Norway 5-0.

Canada’s semifinal match is Friday at 10:30 a.m. ET while the other semi pits the U.S. vs the Czech Republic at 2 p.m. ET. 

A victory would advance Canada to the gold-medal game Saturday at 10:30 a.m. ET while a loss would mean playing for bronze at 7 a.m. ET. 

All of Canada’s games will be available to watch via live on the Canadian Paralympic Committee Facebook page, as well as the CBC Sports and Radio-Canada streaming services.


–    There have been record crowds at the tournament including a turnout of 8,462 for the Czech-Sweden game on Tuesday.

–    Team Canada captain Tyler McGregor is third in tournament scoring with four goals and four assists for eight points. Liam Hickey is the top scoring defenceman with three goals and three assists.

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