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Sharks Impress Fans at NHL Global Series Challenge

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Berlin — Mercedes Platz was ticking towards match time for the 2022 NHL Global Series Challenge between the San Jose Sharks and Eisballen Berlin of the German Ishocky Liga.

A woman in a New York Rangers jersey with a Boston Bruins sweater and a Vancouver Canucks jersey resting in a chair, a matching couple Carrie Price Montreal Canadiens jerseys hit the stands at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in addition to the expected Eisballen Berlin apparel. Of course, the most prevalent in the NHL lot was the shark jersey, from Joe Thornton to Patrick Malraux to Christian Ehrhoff.

The chant barely stopped. There was always a call-and-response, a drum beat, or a song, constant cheering and flag waving, and levels of noise during play that could give North American hockey purists migraine headaches. It was European football.

Sharks coach David Quinn said of the Hertha BSC vs. TSG 1899 Hoffenheim match at Berlin’s Olympiastadion: ‘I got my first taste of fan participation when I went to the football game on Sunday.’ . “People here are passionate about the sport. Playing in such an environment was a lot of fun for the players and for me.”

The NHL Global Series Challenge will serve as the Sharks’ final preseason game before the regular season begins with the 2022 NHL Global Series, with back-to-back games between San Jose and the Nashville Predators at The O2 Arena in Prague on Friday and Saturday. .

“Home fans, drums, singing, that’s what I was really familiar with in my life before I came to the NHL,” Sharks said. Thomas Hertl, was born in Prague. “It’s kind of a European style fan, so hopefully we’ll have a lot of fans on our side.” [in Prague] Because we have Czech players and I play at home. “

At the Mercedes-Benz Arena on Tuesday, the cacophony of 12,013 attendees was right behind the visitors’ net, which was renamed after the former player and coach who spent 53 years at Eisballen Berlin and SC Dynamo. It was from Hartmut Nickel Kurve. Berlin until his retirement in 2016.

And at 12:10 in the second period, it didn’t get any louder than Giovanni Fiore’s goal gave Eisballen Berlin the lead.goalie Capo Kakonen were exchanging James Reimer 45 seconds early, Eisbaren Berlin had the advantage.

Fans stood, twirling scarves over their heads, repeating scores to the announcers, and generally reveling in the fact that their club was leading the NHL team.

‘Obviously very different’, Sharks move forward Stephen Lorenz Said. “The chant and they were flying around and drumming while we were playing. There were a few times when I was just sitting on the bench enjoying the passion they showed for the home team. increase.”

The Sharks came back to win, starting with a goal from Hertl with 2:54 left in the second period, scoring after a no-look passback from the goal line. Timo Meyer40 seconds later there was another shark from Lorenz. In 3rd place with 11:56 remaining, Luke Kunin scored during a shorthand of Sharks win 3-1.

“It felt good,” Meyer said. “I think we didn’t get the start we wanted in the beginning, but overall it was a great experience. We had a great crowd and I think we won the match. Overall, it was a great experience and everyone enjoyed it. .”

The game’s only mark was the absence of Nico Sturm, the only German of the shark. Sturm was ruled out Friday Friday after suffering a heavy blow in the Sharks’ final preseason game in North America against his Golden Knights in Vegas.

However, the shark managed to contain him. Sturm, from Augsburg, Germany, was cheered by the crowd as he swapped jerseys on the ice with his Eisbarren his Berliner Marcel his Novels before the start of the match. And there was another just for sharks.

“I’m so sorry for Nico,” said Quinn. “I wish he could have played. I can’t imagine how excited I was to be able to play. “

It wasn’t just thrilling for sharks. For Eisbaren Berlin, his two-time defending champion of the DEL, it was just as exciting.

“Many of our players follow the NHL,” said Eisbarren Berlin coach Serge Aubin. “They can see it from afar. And now they have to live the experience.” not.”