May 27, 2012, 10:26 PM EST
Hockey is truly an international sport, with stars coming from Canada, the United States, Russia, Sweden and plenty of other locales. Still, there are some relatively uncharted territories, but the Los Angeles Times reports that Anze Kopitar‘s run to the 2012 Stanley Cup finals is making some waves in his native Slovenia.
“There is actually a pretty big buzz back there,” Kopitar said. “I’ve been going on online and reading some of the news from back there. The Kings are pretty big.”
“There are more and more kids playing hockey.”
As for whether he is responsible, Kopitar said, “Maybe a little.”
There’s another reason to dig Kopitar: (false?) modesty in huge quantities. If you see future Slovenian exports, they’re likely to honor their country’s first true star (sorry, Jan Mursak) by wearing his No. 11 or at least crediting him with inspiration.
Don’t be surprised if a few Los Angeles-born hockey players claim Kopitar as their hero too, though.
- Leafs captain Phaneuf suspended two games for boarding 6
- Rangers confirm Staal suffered concussion 5
- Winnipeg to get outdoor game; Phoenix wants one 8
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head 156
- Report: Dion Phaneuf will face hearing for hit on Kevan Miller 101
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ 128
- Lecavalier out 3-4 weeks with non-displaced fracture in back 8
- Islanders players hold closed-door meeting after ninth straight loss 15
- Penguins’ Neal has phone hearing for knee on Bruins’ Marchand 90
- Shawn Thornton confirms hearing with NHL Department of Player Safety (Updated) 88
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (182)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (156)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (129)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (128)
- Orpik suffers from concussion, including memory loss (106)