Here in Borovichi they have a professional Bandy team. Bandy, a prehistoric version of hockey which originated in Russia in the 1700s, looks like a mashup of soccer and field hockey on a giant ice surface with 10 players per side + a goaltender (without stick and defending a huge goal). Heading earns you a 5 minute penalty!
Watched the Barcelona v Bayern Champions League blowout in a bar titled Nagano 98 — a reference to the Czech National Team’s Ice Hockey gold at the 1998 Nagano Olympics. As you may have noticed, the Czechs are mad-crazy about hockey. I made friends with a group from Ostrava including former Bruins prospect David Hod’a (played for the Chilliwack Bruins in 2008). With the blowout, we drank too much Schnaps and stayed out too late.
In OT! Zlin vs Plzn. Game is more rollerhockey-style than NHL. Lots of physicality after the whistle but way less during play than NHL, especially for a playoff game. Wide open and already several partial breakaways.