Canada’s coaches at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi: Hitchcock, Ruff, Babcock, Julien
The initial list of players invited to Canada’s Olympic orientation camp has been released, which means it’s time to scream and yell and pull our hair out. Here’s what Team Canada is working with, from theScore’s handy-dandy NHL section:
Hockey Canada has announced the 47 players who will make up their preliminary Olympic roster for the 2014 Games in Sochi.
The team will be coached by the Detroit Red Wings’ Mike Babcock.
He’s the best in the biz, so I love this.
The preliminary roster is as follows:
Goalies: Corey Crawford, Braden Holtby, Roberto Luongo, Carey Price, Mike Smith
* Braden Holtby with the nod. I suppose that’s not unreasonable.
* What, no James Reimer? (Ohhh, right, he was deemed not good enough to be a starter by the Leafs.)
* Also: the whole “Marc-Andre Fleury” thing is officially done, eh? I’m perfectly okay with this. Feel bad for the guy, but yeah…the majority of smart hockey minds are off that bandwagon. Funny, at one point it was all about him and Cam Ward.
* Martin Brodeur is definitely, definitely past where he’d need to be to be invited to this camp. But it’s still weird. He’s been a part of the program forever.
Defense: Karl Alzner, Jay Bouwmeester, Dan Boyle, Drew Doughty, Mike Green, Dan Hamhuis, Travis Hamonic, Duncan Keith, Kris Letang, Marc Methot, Dion Phaneuf, Alex Pietrangelo, Brent Seabrook, Marc Staal, PK Subban, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Shea Weber
* This is a pretty deadly group. My “really?” group of interesting invitees includes Marc Methot, Karl Alzner and Travis Hamonic, but I suppose it’s not like they’ll make the team. Still, huge compliment to a guy like Hamonic to be a part of this group.
Oh, that’d be just lovely.
* Francois Beauchemin is a bit of a notable omission from this group. Who would possibly want Methot over him? Hell, I’d take Dan Girardi over Marc Methot. Playing with Erik Karlsson is good for your career, it seems.
Forwards: Patrice Bergeron, Jeff Carter, Logan Couture, Sidney Crosby, Matt Duchene, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Getzlaf, Claude Giroux, Taylor Hall, Chris Kunitz, Andrew Ladd, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Rick Nash, James Neal, Corey Perry, Mike Richards, Patrick Sharp, Eric Staal, Jordan Staal, Martin St. Louis, Steven Stamkos, John Tavares, Joe Thornton, Jonathan Toews
* Couple interesting notes here, with “no Jamie Benn” being near the top of the list. Especially when you’re tossing in Chris Kunitz and Brad Marchand.
* You have to feel for Jarome Iginla here. I realize he might be in Camp Brodeur for players just too far along in their careers to provide much value, he’s just been a part of it all for so long, and did so much for Canada in international play. But…yeah. Here we are.
* Also notable: No Tyler Seguin, no Patrick Marleau, no Vincent Lecavalier, no Jason Spezza, no Evander Kane. I have a hunch some of this could change.
* I heart Matt Duchene and would love to see him on this team.
* I’ve heard some people making noise about Brent Burns. He’s a fine player. Take a look at the group above. That ain’t his level.
So, what are your thoughts? Any glaring omissions or surprises?