Lions Cup hosts premier youth ice hockey tournaments in Finland and the Czech Republic. Boys’ and girls’ teams from Europe and North America play in divisions across various age groups and levels of play.
Comprehensive practical arrangements are set up by the tournament organizers to provide teams and players’ families a smooth and memorable experience.
The MCN Hockey Club is a US-based organization with teams at various levels of youth ice hockey. Although primarily from the US, their teams have players from several different countries. They participate in tournaments both in the US and internationally. The organization has participated in Lions Cup since 2018.
This goes back to the experiences of the head of MCN Hockey Club, Dave LoPresti. During his time playing professional hockey, he had the opportunity to see first-hand what hockey in Northern Europe was like.
– It started with when I was younger and a player. I had been to Sweden and Finland a few times to play in tournaments. I wanted to give back to the younger generation and continue bringing players over here because the level of hockey is great, LoPresti explains.
Focus on the fun stuff
Lions Cup aims to provide a well-rounded and uncomplicated experience. As participants are unburdened by practical considerations such as accommodations, meals, or getting around, they are left simply to enjoy their time coming together both on and off the ice, visiting new places and playing against teams from various countries.
– We’ve gone through pretty much everything that they have laid out for us, and it’s been spot on where they have provided everything that they said they’d provide. So it’s been amazing, LoPresti says.
A time to remember
According to LoPresti, the players of the MCN Hockey Club and their families have definitely enjoyed their time at the Finland Lions Cup:
– From the smiles on their faces to all the new friends that they’ve been hanging out with, everybody has been enjoying their time here.
That sentiment is echoed by the MCN players themselves. For Oliver, ice hockey and seeing the world is a great combination. Cooper says the tournament is a lot of fun and something he’ll never forget.
LoPresti thinks Lions Cup is a nice change of pace for North American organizations. He sees the MCN Hockey Club coming back year after year.
– If there’s an organization out there that wants to do something unique and totally different from the same old that they do back home, this is definitely the tournament to come to. We look forward to already coming back next year and the year after. We’re going to be back in for as long as they’ll have us.