Lian Bichsel and Step into the Spotlight
Wolfweiler Leanne Bischsell (16) is one of the leading figures in the Swiss U-18 team, which will participate in the World Cup Finals near Dallas starting Monday. Piel Junior, who learned the basics of ice hockey at EHC Olten, may end up in the NHL talent scouting notebooks.
When Lian Bichsel first stepped into the coat room of the first team of EHC Biel last December, professionals from New Zealand asked themselves: Who is this tall guy? Despite being less than 17 years old, Wolfwiler is an imposing character. 1.93m tall and 94kg heavy. For the ice hockey player, this is much more than a defender. If there is also talent that is not small, this is a very promising “package”.
An interesting mix between a bastard and a curious player
Biel’s sporting director, Martin Stinger, sure knows what the rough diamonds that landed a few years ago from EHC Olten’s junior division in the Zeeland ranks. He says, “Lian is an exciting mix between a mean and inquisitive player who always questions himself and wants to improve. He learns very quickly – which is a positive point and very important to young athletes.” Its potential? Steinegger: “So wide open up. I see a lot in it.”
The U-18 World Cup, which begins near Dallas at the weekend, has clearly been of pioneering interest to Leanne Becsell. The World Championships for this age group is a playground for talent scouts from the NHL teams. Given his age, Bichsel is only eligible for the NHL Draft, Talent Draw next year. However, scouts will see the Swiss giant with eagle-eyed sentries. Although Swiss NHL scout Thomas Rust, who also works at EHC Biel, cautions caution: “Lian is a bit difficult to assess because he’s physically outdating opponents of the same age.” But he “definitely” has potential for a professional career, according to Rust: “I love him.”
As the third youngest player in a leadership role
Even if Lien Bechcel were the third youngest player in the Swiss U-18 squad, he would play an important role in coach Marcel Jenny’s World Cup squad. “I think I can be one of the leaders on the team,” says Wolfwell, who also owns a backpack full of experience due to his short assignments in the NLA and his high volume of assignments with the elite junior Biel.
“I was able to learn a lot in training with the NLA players. The games were more like the first try. Maybe I had five bouts in four matches I was on the match paper. But I was able to closely watch how the professionals on the ice behave in different situations »
Says the son of former national handball player Andre Beechsl, who is currently coaching the women’s team HV Olten. The World Cup for the Swiss kicks off next Monday, with a duel against Latvia. Interesting: In their fourth and final group match, Lian Bichsel and Co will meet Canada on April 30th. It is known that there are players who have left permanent marks on EHC Olten this season: Brennan Osman and Mason Mc Tavish.
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