Champions Alumni Game

Hockey greats and Gazprom's world-touring team face each other in Quebec City

10.05.2008
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Mats Naslund (World Stars), IIHF president René Fasel (referee) and Alexander Medvedev (Gazprom). Photo: IIHF/Martin Merk

QUEBEC CITY – A Champions Alumni Game with former hockey stars will be played when the current World Championship players have a day off, on May 15 at 19:00 at the Colisée Pepsi. The event is a remake of a similar game during the 2007 World Championship in Moscow between the World Stars and Team Gazprom.

Hockey greats from six countries will be represented, including Quebec City native and current Quebec Remparts (QMJHL) head coach Patrick Roy. The well-known former goalie of the Montreal Canadiens and the Colorado Avalanche will change positions and play as a skater. Another well-known player in Quebec City is former NHL forward Mats Naslund. “I had many good games here with the Montreal Canadiens,” the Swede remembers.

Also part of the World Stars are, among others, the six 2008 IIHF Hall of Fame inductees: Cammi Granato, Geraldine Heaney, Angela James, Philippe Bozon, Igor Larionov and Art Berglund (as the honorary team manager). The team will be complemented by Blackberry tycoon Jim Balsillie, who is well-known for his attempt to buy an NHL franchise. Like last year, coaching legend Scotty Bowman will headline the coaching staff. Other coaches include Lou Vairo, Geraldine Heaney, and Barry Smith.

World Stars roster: Goalies: Sean Burke (CAN), Bobby Farrelly (USA). Skaters: Glenn Anderson (CAN), Jim Balsillie (CAN), Philippe Bozon (FRA), Doug Brown (USA), Ray Ferraro (USA), Mark Fusco (USA), Cammi Granato (USA), Raimo Helminen (FIN), Jyrki Lumme (FIN), Angela James (CAN), Jari Kurri (FIN), Igor Larionov (RUS), Vladimir Malakhov (RUS), Mats Naslund (SWE), Patrick Roy (CAN), Esa Tikkanen (FIN), Scott Young (USA).

The team of Gazprom, the world's largest gas extractor, is touring around the world and will be bolstered by Russian legends Vyacheslav Fetisov, Valeri Kamensky, Vladimir Lutchenko and Alexander Yakushev. “We have about 30 international games and we use hockey to establish diplomatic relations,” said Gazprom vice-president Alexander Medvedev, who will also be on the ice. The hockey-loving entrepreneur is also the president of the Russian club SKA St. Petersburg, and he is Russia’s applicant for the IIHF Council.

The game will be officiated by IIHF President and former referee René Fasel, and by former NHL referee and Quebec Nordiques player Paul Stewart.

Tickets can be purchased for $5 at the Colisée Pepsi. All proceeds from this game will be donated toward Quebec’s junior hockey programs.

MARTIN MERK

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