Thanks to those 5 figures, the ZSC is presently unbeatable – Digital Samachaar

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The ZSC Lions stay flawless within the play-off, they’re nonetheless lacking a win on Monday to achieve the ultimate. Who really makes this crew so robust?

The ZSC has already strung collectively seven wins within the play-offs and may attain the ultimate on Monday in Zug. Coach Marc Crawford speaks in good spirits when he says: “The fourth win is at all times essentially the most troublesome,” however in the meanwhile there isn’t any opponent with the dimensions of Zurich to be seen. The dominance of the sovereign qualification winner ZSC is just not least as a result of beneficiant price range and the posh of being the one crew within the Nationwide League to keep up its personal farm crew. However within the present season, 5 characters stand out – they’re the fathers of hovering.

Sven Leuenberger: The sports activities director did an ideal job

The sports activities director, who was appointed in 2017, has needed to hearken to lots of criticism not too long ago. And he was additionally irritated by coaches who thought he was too near the crew; the time period “micromanagement” was talked about. However Leuenberger, 54, did an ideal job in the summertime and put collectively by far the perfect, most full crew. All six common foreigners turned out to be a direct hit – how useful that’s was already proven final yr when Geneva/Servette gained the championship. Actually: It helps in the event you can draw on the whole lot financially and little convincing is required as a result of the ZSC is among the most famed ice hockey organizations exterior of the NHL. And it’s also useful that Zurich’s youth crew has been working so nicely for years that there isn’t any purpose for gamers like Denis Malgin, Sven Andrighetto or Dean Kukan to search for happiness elsewhere. However Leuenberger has discovered the correct mix. Which isn’t any coincidence: As a supervisor, he has already put collectively 4 championship groups.

Christian Marti: the key captain

Christian Marti is probably the perfect defensive defender within the league. And one thing like the key captain of this crew. Marti, 31, grew up at EHC Kloten, however is now in his seventh ZSC season. The Bülacher may be very well-liked inside the crew as a result of he seems very relaxed and humorous within the locker room, however leaves little to likelihood on the ice and evokes respect from his opponents along with his posture (1.93 meters, 97 kilos). His defensive colleague Yannick Weber says: “He is among the most vital pillars of this crew. He doesn’t take himself too critically, however on the identical time he works very exhausting. And he strives to maintain getting higher. You need teammates like that.” Marti is a four-time World Cup participant – and within the ZSC dressing room he’s answerable for the music alongside striker Chris Baltisberger.

Denis Malgin: by far a very powerful ZSC participant

Christian Marti summed it up aptly within the quarter-final sequence in opposition to Biel, which he gained 4-0, when he instructed the NZZ: “Denis helps.” Malgin, 27, returned in the summertime from North America, the place his expertise had been unusually unrecognized. The ZSC’s expectations of him have been virtually inhumanly excessive – and he fulfilled them. Malgin is by far a very powerful ZSC participant on the offensive; he’s indispensable as a supply of inspiration and timing. Along with his understanding of the sport and his passes, he makes each teammate higher – it’s vital that Sven Andrighetto has discovered his means again to his previous energy alongside Malgin regardless of well being issues. Andrighetto, 31, was hardly recognizable final winter with out Malgin, however now he’s ZSC’s high scorer with ten factors from seven video games. He now appears to have come to phrases with the truth that he doesn’t obtain sufficient appreciation within the NHL: He has now began a household and feels snug in Zurich. His father Albert works as an assistant coach at EHC Visp.

Simon Hrubec: the worthy descendant of Ari Sulander

It took some time, however the ZSC has lastly discovered Ari Sulander’s worthy descendant. Sulander resigned in 2012 and now works as an animal undertaker within the northern Finnish metropolis of Oulu, close to the Arctic Circle. Since then, ZSC has tried totally different goalkeepers: Jakub Kovar, Ludovic Waeber, Lukas Flüeler, Niklas Schlegel, Luca Boltshauser, Tim Wolf. There have been above-average goalies amongst them, however the aura of membership legend Sulander remained unmatched – his jersey now hangs underneath the roof of the Swiss Life Area. Hrubec, 32, has not but achieved his standing both, however he’s lacking 4 championship titles. However the Czech’s performances are persistently at a world-class stage. He was the perfect goalkeeper within the qualification with a save charge of 93.21 p.c. Within the play-offs it’s 94.85 p.c, it’s a worth that’s out of this world.

It definitely helps that he can play behind the perfect protection within the league. However along with his calm, level-headed method and his aura, Hrubec additionally helps these in entrance of him. Behind the goalie masks there may be an fascinating persona: Hrubec comes from a humble background. So as to have the ability to afford the costly goalkeeper tools, he as soon as offered his Ps console as a baby. And some years in the past he based the non-profit group Saves Assist, through which each goalie donates 10 Czech crowns (virtually 40 centimes) to an excellent trigger for each shot saved. Goalies have additionally joined in Switzerland, resembling Hrubec’s antipode on this semi-final sequence, the seven-time champion goalie Leonardo Genoni.

Derek Grant: exceeded the wildest expectations

A 33-year-old, 200-pound attacker who has been utilized in North America as a defensive destroyer for nearly the final six years? There was trigger for skepticism when the ZSC introduced the arrival of Derek Grant in July. However the team-oriented middle was a dream participant of coach Crawford, who coached Grant when he was 11 years previous – he occurred to play on the identical crew as Crawford’s son Dylan within the Canadian metropolis of Langley. Grant gained a foothold in Switzerland surprisingly shortly, although he had by no means performed on the bigger European ice rink earlier than. Offensively, he has exceeded even the wildest expectations – Grant has already scored two hat methods within the play-offs. And along with his routine, he’s a type of gamers that Crawford can use in any recreation state of affairs with out hesitation.

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