18 August 2017, Ljubljana – In the up-coming season the coaching staff of the Slovenia’s National Ice Hockey team will be additionally strengthened by Finish ice hockey expert Risto Dufva, who has over a quarter of a century of coaching background in Finish league competitions, as well as world championship and olympic games experience.
Risto Dufva will assume the position of coach-advisor to the new head-coach Kari Savolainen within the Slovenian coaching staff; similar to the one the latter had at the Sochi 2014 Olympics, when Matjaž Kopitar was the head coach of the lynxes.
The cooperation with the mentioned ice hockey expert, who is for the second season in a row head coach of Finish elite league team Jukurit is agreed for the season 2017-18, notably for the November Euro Ice Hockey Challenge Tournament in France and Slovenia’s participation at the XXXIII Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, Korea. His club obligations permitting, he will also assist Team Slovenia in its quest to regain its place among the world’s ice hockey elite at the Worlds in Budapest late April next year.
Risto Dufva (54) has under his prominent coaching belt also several international experiences, as he participated at the 2005 World Championship in Austria as the assistant coach to Team Finland. In the same role in 2006 he had a hand in Finland’s Olympic silver in Torino, Italy and bronze at the Worlds in Riga, Latvia. The Finish Ice Hockey Federation has entrusted him with the responsibility of assistant coach also at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics where Team Finland won bronz medal. In 2009 he won the Finnish Championship as Head Coach of JYP Jyväskylä and was elected the best Coach in Finland.