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SEPTEMBER 24, 2022 G A PTS
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SLOVAK GOALIE SIMON LATKOCZY BLASTS OFFICIALS OVER PLANNING FOR WORLD JUNIORS

DEC 30, 2021  (9H15)      TJ TUCKER
Much has been said about poor planning leading to the cancellation of the World Juniors in Alberta this year, and Team Slovak goaltender Simon Latkoczy is having his say. The 19-year-old took to his Instagram account and posted about the tournament ending, calling it "a joke" and saying officials got it all wrong.

Note: Latkoczy's posts were in English. The quotes included below are exactly what was posted on his account, with no errors fixed.

"I would like to say few words about this wolds junior tournament. It is a joke. Nothing else is true. How is this even possible? Every single player has been preparing for this tournament for a days, months, even the years," said Latkoczy.

"This goes on IIHF. They completely underestimated this tournament," he continued. "The organization from the first day was terrible. I felt like I am participating at some basic youth hockey tournament.

"Last year we spent whole tournament in bubble just at our hotel and at the rink. It was crazy but it worked. The people who worked for us were in the bubble with us during all tournament. They did not go home at all. When I compare it to this year. We came couple days earlier to be quarantined at our hotel rooms to make sure there is no Covid after traveling," said Latkoczy.

"We all lived at the hotel where also lived normal citizens. In our hotel, was also barber shop, restaurant and boutique, where normal people were welcomed to come. That restaurant was packed every night. So we were in contact with people who were not part of the tournament all the time. The funniest thing ever is that there was a wedding at our hotel today. What a joke. The people who worked at the hotel or waitresses who worked for us went home every night. True, every one has been tested every day but we know that the positive cases do not have to show up right after being in contact with someone. So how does it make a sense? Only couple players from the teams were tested positive. It has never been whole team or half of the team. Why the negative players could not play? Why every one recommends vaccine when the rules are still same? Yes, I am vaccinated, end every single player of our team is, did not make a difference. Why IIHF did not try to find the solution to continue with a tournament? They already lost o lot of money. Those money has been wasted for nothing. They could at least try to figure out something how to finish this tournament. They did not, they decided to end this tournament like it is some pointless couple games for some random guys who spent the holidays in Canada."

Latkoczy thoughts seem to be shared by many players and coaches who were surprised to discover they were not staying in a full-on restricted bubble like at last year's tournament. Meanwhile, IIHF President Luc Tardif has stated he wants to continue the tournament in the summer to ensure it is finished before the next one.


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