As we find ourselves less than 11 weeks before the Beijing Olympics, many observers are concerned about China’s participation in the men’s hockey tournament.
This is particularly the case with Montrealer Mark Simon, who trained for 14 years in the Central Empire.
“It doesn’t make sense for the Chinese team to play in a tournament of this magnitude,” admits the man who has also worked with the Kunlun Red Star in the Continental League (KHL) “It doesn’t make sense for the Chinese team to play in a tournament of this magnitude.”
In an interview with Jean-Philippe Bertrand on the podcast La Dose, Mark Simon showed no optimism for the Chinese team, unless players with ancestral origins are allowed to join the team.
“Without these players, we’re talking about a 30-0 defeat. With them, maybe 15-0.”
Currently, the KHL squad in Kunlun relies on players such as Tyler Wong, Brandon Yip and Spencer Foo. Three Canadians of Chinese descent. At the moment, they are not eligible to wear the China jersey for the Olympic competition in 2022.
Unlike Korea in 2018, China seems to have made no extra effort to present a more competitive team.
“Yes, there are many hockey players, but they don’t have the Canadian hockey system or the American hockey system, so this is detrimental to development,” said Simon, sadly, who recently decided to return to the country.
In September, new IIHF chief Luc Tardif expressed his concerns about Team China.
“Seeing a team defeat 15-0 is not good for anyone, not for China or ice hockey,” he said.
However, the IIHF has confirmed in the past few days that the host nation will indeed be part of the tournament in a group consisting of Canada, the United States and Germany.
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