With one week to go before Hockey Canada announces their Men’s Olympic Ice Hockey Team; radios, newspapers and internet sites all feature discussions on who’s going to make the team and who’s going to get cut. On Monday, December 7, I posted a blog called “Solid Gold” , in which I tried to project what Team Canada will look like. 2 weeks later; I am ready to submit my final projected roster for the gold medal favorite.
Martin Broduer (starter)
Roberto Luongo (backup)
Marc-Andre Fleury (#3)
Changes from Dec-7 – None
Could I be wrong? – Nope, not at this position. These choices are very obvious.
Scott Niedermayer ( C )
Changes from Dec-7 – None
Could I be wrong? – Yes, but if I am wrong, it won’t be because I missed on guys like Dion Phaneuf or Mike Green who are very unpredictable defensively. Canada wants D who can effectively contribute in all situations, who play smart and who can move the puck. So, if a player from the group of 7 mentioned above were ousted for someone not on the list, it would probably be to make room for rising star Drew Doughty.
Rick Nash – Sidney Crosby ( A ) – Jarome Iginla ( A )
Patrick Marleau – Joe Thornton – Dany Heatley
Eric Staal – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
Brendan Morrow – Mike Richards – Mike Fisher
13th forward: Jonathan Toews
Changes from Dec-7 – Thornton, E. Staal and Fisher are in, while Stamkos, St. Louis and Doan are out.
Could I be wrong? – Crosby, Nash and Iginla have always been locks, while the San Jose line has been too dominant this year and their spots are locked up as far as im concerned. Getzlaf and Perry will almost certainly make this team as well, and I can’t see Richards and Morrow not playing together on a checking line. Many feel that Richards does not deserve a spot, but no one can do the job better than he can; and that’s shutting down a top line and killing penalties. That would leave the LW spot with Getzlaf-Perry and the RW spot alongside Morrow-Richards unspoken for, as well as the #13 forward spot.
I chose Eric Staal even though others are having better years, frankly because there aren’t many candidates to begin with. Dustin Penner, Mike Cammalleri and Brad Richards are all having better years, but you can’t discount for Staal’s performance in the playoffs last year and for the fact that he is one of only 3 other Canadians that have scored 30+ in each of the last 4 years.
For the fourth line RW spot; the best player is Martin St. Louis, but he doesn’t fit the role. Candidates are Shane Doan, Mike Fisher and Patrice Bergeron. Many feel Bergeron is having the best year, and there are some (including myself) who feel Doan’s leadership and experience are intangibles that Canada needs. However, I landed on Fisher because of his great year, his ability to play a shutdown role and kill penalties (very similar to Richards), his energy and his passion.
I have been on the Stamkos bandwagon for a while and I still believe he is one of the 13 best Canadian forwards. Unfortunately, he doesn’t fit the bill as the #13 forward as well as Toews does. Toews can step into any role and do a good job, and he has the ability to be a shootout specialist as well.
Let the second-guessing begin!
About the Author
Written by Corey Krakower
I am the Director of NHL Content & Habs writer for ProSportsBlogging.com; I have spent 8 seasons behind the bench as a minor hockey coach; and I am the future GM of the Montreal Canadiens (according to my mom). I spend my days managing the Harrow Sports brand in my hometown of Montreal and I moonlight as a Hockey Advisor for Pi Athlete Management. Most importantly, I'll throw anyone under the bus for a laugh.