O'Canada! Stevie Y's edition of Team Canada.

December 30, 2009

It's a job many would love to have, but a responsibility few could handle with the skill and grace of Steve Yzerman - the role of executive director for Team Canada, charged with selecting the Men's Olympic hockey team. Today, months of speculation ended, and 6 weeks of second guessing commenced, as the Men's Olympic Hockey Team was unveiled at a press conference in Saskatoon. Team Canada was even a trending topic on Twitter today - testament to the number of people in our country who are passionate about hockey and the Olympic games!

Team Canada contained only a few surprises, with goaltenders a lock for several months with Cam Ward injured and Steve Mason playing poorly, and experienced players like Niedermayer, Iginla and Pronger surefire picks for Vancouver 2010 - there was little room to play your way onto the team.
However, Patrice Bergeron did just that - playing his way onto the team with a stellar first half with the Bruins, although it probably helped that he's played with Crosby before at the '05 World Juniors. While many have labeled him the 13th forward, he may end up on Canada's first line with Crosby and Nash. Look out goaltenders everywhere! Twenty-year-old Drew Doughty was the big surprise on defence, although he's already drawing comparisons with Ray Bourque from Bob McKenzie, his skill level was never in question. While Doughty is lacking in senior international experience, Doughty is the future of Team Canada's D-core, so this pick makes sense to allow him to lead a no-Niedermayer, no-Pronger team in 2014. Much the chagrin of my friends here in Calgary, Jay Bouwmeester was bumped to allow the inclusion of Doughty. J-Bo has averaged the most minutes of any NHL player, can move the puck quickly, hit hard and quarterback the powerplay - that a player like him is left off speaks to the immense depth of talent that Mr. Yzerman and co. had to choose for this team. Who knows - maybe one of the top 7 D-men get injured in the next couple weeks, and J-Bo gets a chance to show what they missed by not picking him?

I can't say I disagree with any of Hockey Canada's picks for the Olympic games - and I'm sure looking forward to seeing these players suit up together in 6 weeks time. The criticism that Stevie Y will have to face if this team doesn't win gold is immense, but I think he's picked the right team to go all the way! Go Canada Go!



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This blog is the online chronicle of our adventures leading up to, and including, the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. We hope to give you a little insight into what went into planning our trip and a first hand look at the Games from the ground in Vancouver.

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