With just under 2 years to go until the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, ProSportsBlogging.com will run a 6-part feature that will identify the hockey players that will likely represent their respective countries at the Olympic Games. The 6 hockey super powers to be covered include Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden and USA.
Today’s featured country: Russia
2010 Result: Lost to Canada in Quarterfinals
Projected returning players: 10 (6F, 2D, 2G)
TEAM RUSSIA’S PROJECTED 2014 OLYMPIC ROSTER
A. Ovechkin – E. Malkin – A. Semin
I. Kovalchuk – P. Datsyuk – A. Radulov
N. Kulemin – A. Anisimov – A. Burmistrov
V. Tarasenko – E. Kuznetsov – N. Yakupov
FORWARDS: As per usual, the strength of Team Russia will be up front. No team can match the skill level of their top 6 forwards, and if soon to be NHLers like Kuznetsov, Yakupov and Tarasenko develop into the stars they are projected to be, this team will be a lot of fun to watch.
D. Kulikov – A. Volchenkov
A. Markov – A. Emelin
D. Orlov – S. Voynov
DEFENSE: Russia’s defense will not be among the better groups, but they are benefitting from the infusion of young talent in the NHL. In fact, the 3 rookies (Emelin, Orlov, Voynov) have performed so well that bigger names like Gonchar and Tyutin were left off of this list.
GOALIES: Goaltending has consistently been a weakness for Russia, and as it stands, the 2014 Olympics will be no exception. The smart money is on Bryzgalov to be named the starter, but it is very conceivable that Varlamov ends up being the consensus #1 goalie, as he has looked brilliant at times this season.
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.