Last Year – The Slovaks went .500 in the round robin, finishing in 3rd place. They lost to the Finns in the cross-over game and then to arch-rival Czech Republic in the 5th place game, finishing 6th in the tournament.
# Returnees -5 (expected) – Richard Sabol, Peter Bezuska, Peter Ceresnak, Marko Dano, Richard Mraz
Key Players – Marko Dano is a key leader who is presently playing in the KHL. He is eligible for the 2013 NHL draft.
Watch For – Richard Mraz is a returnee who will be counted on for offense. He began the season with the Ottawa 67’s but the relationship didn’t work and he returned home to play.
Prediction – The Slovaks are not overwhelmingly talented, and unfortunately for them they are in the “Group of Death” consisting of Canada, the US and Russia. It will be nearly impossible for them to advance to the quarterfinals and they will be stuck in the relegation round. The biggest factor for them could be the fact that up to 15 players on the roster could come from one team, Orange 20 Bratislava, so chemistry should be on their side. A 7th or 8th place finish looks like the best they could hope for this year.