NEW IceCaps Alumni Join Team Canada for Winter Olympics
NEW IceCaps Alumni Join Team Canada for Winter Olympics
WBS Pens player Christian Thomas named to Canadian Olympic team
12 January, 2018, 06:20
Those heavy hitters will be bolstered by a core made up of KHL teammates who'll have the advantage of familiarity that, so often in history, has helped push European countries with domestic leagues ahead of Canada's non-NHL Olympians in the podium pecking order. The Canadian women have won four consecutive gold medals, including at the 2014 Sochi Games, when they defeated the United States in an epic overtime thriller.
Hockey Canada used three global tournaments - the Karjala Cup, Channel One Cup and Spengler Cup - to evaluate potential players, and waited until the completion of the World Junior Championship to reveal the Olympics roster, which doesn't include a member of the gold medal-winning under-20 team.
They don't exactly bring the star power of Sidney Crosby, Jonathan Toews and Carey Price, all Olympic gold medallists. For all of those un-golden Games but the 1998 version, Canada's representatives weren't Canada's best hockey players. "I apologize I can't do this in French, but I could probably do it in Russian".
The bulk of the National Hockey League experience comes from a half-dozen forwards with some familiar names. The OAR team will be able to draw from a deep pool of homegrown players now in the KHL, including former National Hockey League star Ilya Kovalchuk.
Thomas has nine goals and eight assists in 23 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season.
The NHL declined to send its players to the Olympics this time around. Mason Raymond - a former 25-goal scorer for the Vancouver Canucks - will be on the team.
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"These guys that are going to be named here today they earned it", general managerSean Burke said. But there will be some players recognized by local hockey fans.
Defencemen: Stefan Elliott, Chay Genoway, Cody Goloubef, Marc-André Gragnani, Chris Lee, Maxim Noreau, Mat Robinson and Karl Stollery.
In goal, Team Canada will carry Justin Peters, Kevin Poulin and Ben Scrivens. Peters plays in Germany, Scrivens in the KHL and Poulin for a Croatian team that plays in the Austrian league. "They'll accept any role for this tournament and that's what gives us a chance". "That's what our team is about".
Um, who are these guys?
Training camp starts January 28 in Latvia for the Canadians.
Without NHL players Canada struggled to find the top of the Olympic podium, enduring a 50-year gold medal drought before finally reclaiming the crown of Olympic champions at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.
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