Saturday, September 3, 2016

2004 Switzerland National Team Martin Gerber Jersey

Born on this date in 1974, Martin Gerber played three seasons for SC Langnau Tigers of the Swiss League from 1998-99 to 2000-01. During this time he also made his debut for Switzerland at the 2000 World Championships in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Following the 2000-01 season, Gerber was drafted in the eighth round by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim and subsequently played for Farjestads BK in the Swedish Elitserien, where he would lead them to the regular season and playoff championships. 2002 would also see him play for Switzerland at both the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City and again at the World Championships in Sweden.

The following season he would migrate to North America and being his NHL career, first with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim for the 2002-03 and 2003-04 seasons.

Switzerland would call on him again for the 2004 World Championships in the Czech Republic before a busy 2004-05 campaign would see him return to Europe where he split his time between previous clubs SC Langnau Tigers in Switzerland and then Färjestads BK in Sweden followed by a successful Olympic Qualifying tournament and the 2005 World Championships for Switzerland held in Austria.

With the resumption of play in the NHL in 2005-06 Gerber would now tend goal for the Carolina Hurricanes who obtained him in a trade with the Mighty Ducks. Gerber would post a 38-14-6 record with the Hurricanes, but would be replaced by his regular season backup Cam Ward in the first round of the playoffs, who would lead the Hurricanes to the Stanley Cup, making Gerber only the second Swiss player to have his name engraved on the Stanley Cup after David Aebischer in 2001 with the Colorado Avalanche.

Gerber and Aebischer would also share the goaltending duties for Switzerland at the 2006 Olympics in Torino, Italy, where Switzerland would post memorable wins against the Czech Republic by a 3-2 score, followed by a stunning 2-0 win over Canada two days later with Gerber making 49 saves for the shutout for perhaps the greatest 48 hours in Swiss hockey history.

Gerber would sign as a free agent with the Ottawa Senators, where he would play the next two seasons, 2006-07 and 2007-08, going 45-27-7 and making another appearance for Switzerland at the 2008 World Championships in Canada. He would start the 2008-09 season with Ottawa and then move to the Toronto Maple Leafs after being claimed on waivers followed by his seventh trip to the 2009 World Championships, this time hosted by Switzerland.

For the 2009-10 season, Gerber signed with Atlant Moscow of the Kontinental Hockey League, where he went 15-6-6. He would also help Switzerland to a fine 5th place finish at the 2010 World Championships, his best career result to date at the Worlds.

It was back to North America for the 2010-11 season, playing 42 games for the Oklahoma City Barons of the AHL as well as 3 games with their parent club, the Edmonton Oilers for his most recent NHL appearances.

Gerber returned to Sweden for two seasons, beginning by spending 2011-12 with the Vaxjo Lakers before moving to Rogle BK for the 2012-13 season.

Following the conclusion of the Swedish regular season, Gerber once again joined the Switzerland National Team for his ninth World Championships. Switzerland was placed in Group S, the "S" standing for Stockholm, as the tournament location was shared with Helsinki, Finland. Switzerland shocked the hosts by defeating Sweden 3-2 in their opening night game. They next raised eyebrows by defeating Canada 3-2 in a shootout, with Gerber stopping 7 of 8 Canadian attempts.

Next to fall was the Czech Republic, who they put away with 3 third period goals on their way to a 5-2 win. Now through the toughest part of their schedule and full of confidence, the Swiss rolled through Slovenia 7-1, Denmark 4-1, Norway 3-1 and Belarus 4-1 to win the group undefeated with 6 wins and an overtime win for 20 points, two ahead of the Canadians.

In the playoff round, they again faced the Czech Republic, coming out on top 2-1. They advanced to play the United States, easily defeating the Americans 3-0 to guarantee themselves a medal and advance to the championship final. There, they met Sweden, who they had defeated in their opening game, but, playing again in Stockholm, the Swiss fell 5-1 in the final but earned a terrific silver medal for Switzerland and Gerber, who went 4-2 in the tournament with a 1.81 goals against average and a 92% save percentage. It was the best Swiss result at the World Championships since their only other previous silver medal back in 1935, a span of 78 years and their first medal of any kind in 60 years!

Gerber then returned to his native Switzerland for the first time since 2004-05 when he signed with the Kloten Flyers of the Swiss National League A, posting winning records for each of his first two seasons with the Flyers.

Today's featured jersey is a 2004 Switzerland National Team Martin Gerber jersey as worn in the 2004 World Championships held in the Czech Republic. This jersey features custom made Tissot sponsorship patches on the shoulders, as well as the International Ice Hockey Federation patch on the lower back.

This jersey style arrived back in 1998 and remained in use through the 2004 World Championships.

Switzerland 2004 WC jersey photo Switzerland2004WCF.jpg
Switzerland 2004 WC jersey photo Switzerland2004WCB.jpg

Our first video highlight is a player profile on Martin Gerber from his time with the Carolina Hurricanes.

Here is Gerber making an astounding, if not controversial, save against Rick Nash of Canada during his shutout of the Canadians during the 2006 Olympics.

This next highlight is Switzerland's second goal of the game against Canada by Paul DiPietro.

And finally, the last minute of the game as the Swiss players celebrate their upset victory.

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