THE TEAM....

Jason Gregor
January 07 2014 10:30AM

Canada finally announced their 2014 roster for the Sochi Olympics, and without a doubt the biggest surprise is Claude Giroux not making the team.

There are eleven returning players on the 25-man roster, but in my eyes Rick Nash continues to be the most overrated player in the NHL. Nash has had one 70-point season, and since the 2010 Olympics he has scored 185 points in 228 games, 25th most amongst Canadian-born players. In that same time span Marty St.Louis has scored the most points, 271, while Giroux is third with 255.

Giroux is flat out more competitive game in, game out than Nash. Nash has only two goals in 16 NHL playoff games, but Hockey Canada seems to put more onus on the fact he has played well at the water-downed World Championships.

Nash did play okay at the last Olympics, but how much of that was because he was on Toews line, and Toews was the best player in the tournament.

Nash has 18 points in 27 games this year. No one can say he is playing well, or close to the level of Claude Giroux, but Hockey Canada choose him because he's played for them before. I guess Giroux should not play crappier in the NHL so his team could miss the playoffs and he can pad his stats at the World Championships.

Here is the roster, returning players have **.

Goalies:

  • Roberto Luongo**
  • Carey Price
  • Mike Smith

Defence:

  • Jay Bouwmeester
  • Drew Doughty**
  • Dan Hamuis
  • Duncan Keith**
  • Alex Pietrangelo
  • PK Subban
  • Marc-Edouard Vlasic
  • Shea Weber**

Forwards:

  • Jamie Benn
  • Patrice Bergeron**
  • Jeff Carter
  • Sidney Crosby**
  • Matt Duchene
  • Ryan Getzlaf**
  • Chris Kunitz
  • Patrick Marleau**
  • Rick Nash**
  • Corey Perry**
  • Patrick Sharp
  • Steven Stamkos
  • John Tavares
  • Jonathan Toews**

I still believe Canada is the favourite, because of the blueline and their top-six forwards; Crosby, Tavares, Stamkos, Getzlaf, Perry and Toews.

It will be an awesome tournament and I can't wait to watch, but picking Nash over Giroux makes little sense. Essentially they are basing it on seven good games that happened four years ago. Horrible decision.

Which decision surpised you?

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 Tikkanese
January 07 2014, 10:32AM
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What's this bunk? Where's Will Acton?

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#2 ToppsSmith
January 07 2014, 10:46AM
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Tikkanese wrote:

What's this bunk? Where's Will Acton?

He would be on the 4th line if his dad was the assistant coach.

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#3 corky
January 07 2014, 11:36AM
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Whats laughable is that Kevin Lowe is still part of this Team Canada "brainstrust".

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#4 Jason
January 07 2014, 10:51AM
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Didn't like Mike Smith over MA Fleury.
Didn't like Dan Hamhuis over Brent Seabrook
Didn't like Jeff Carter and Rick Nash over Martin St. Louis and Claude Giroux.

Can live with the rest.

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#5 Mo Playoffs Mo Problems
January 07 2014, 11:32AM
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Imagine Canada's "B-Team". They could probably still contend for a medal:

Hall - Thornton - Couture

Neal - Giroux - Eberle

St. Louis - E. Staal - J. Staal

Lucic - Seguin - Ladd

Reserves: Marchand - M. Richards - Doan - J. Williams

Boyle - Seabrook

Giordano - Phaneuf

Letang - M. Staal

Reserves: Girardi - Beauchemin

Bernier

Harding

Ward

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#6 Sisyphus
January 07 2014, 10:45AM
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Something of note—for Team Canada’s roster—of the 25 players, 22 come from teams in the top half of the standings. The only outliers are Tavares, Weber, and Nash. Hate to say it, but if you play for a team in the bottom half of the league, your chances of making Team Canada plummet. There are a few exceptions, but by and large if you aren’t playing for a good team, and playing well for them, you lack a lot of opportunity to make the Olympic roster.

What this says to me about Hallsy’s chances for 2018, barring a truly miraculous turnaround by the Oilers, is not good. I hope for his sake he could be one of the exceptions, but it’s definitely not a sure thing. And for a guy with his talent level and passion, you’d hate to see him get skipped again because he plays for a joke of an organization.

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#7 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 07 2014, 10:52AM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Looks like Hockey Canada puts a premium on 1) Talent 2) Experience 3) Size

Looks more like

1) legacy 2) tradition 3) chemistry 4) BS

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#8 Johe
January 07 2014, 10:42AM
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Looks like Nurse is a lock for the 2018 Olympics. You know, because he shoots left.

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#9 Josh Gladu
January 07 2014, 10:39AM
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This team needs more Luke Gazdic's on it. CLEARLY

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#10 geoilersgist
January 07 2014, 10:40AM
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I am shocked that Nash made the team also. I don't think Stamkos will be ready in time either. The guy had his leg broken and just began skating on his own yesterday. Little surprised they left Seabrook off the team too.

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#11 DrDave
January 07 2014, 10:40AM
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Yzerman didn't read your post about Hall v Duchene I guess.... I feel Hall wasn't even really given that much consideration in the grand scheme of things. I mean TSN didn't even have him listed as a "notable"...

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#12 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 07 2014, 10:35AM
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Kunitz, Marleau, Nash, are mind boggling.

Duchene, Carter are bubble boggling.

D looks good.

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#13 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 07 2014, 10:40AM
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Also interesting to note...only three players that play from Canadian teams. No Oilers, Flames, Leafs, or Senators.

Edit: OOPS! Left out the Jets! No Jets either.

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#14 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 07 2014, 10:47AM
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Josh Gladu wrote:

This team needs more Luke Gazdic's on it. CLEARLY

Seeing Kunitz there for Crosby makes me wonder if they'd have sent Semenko there for Gretzky..

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#15 Me
January 07 2014, 10:51AM
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I find the arguments against Kunitz hilarious...have you seen his totals? "Well his numbers are inflated playing with Crosby" Who the f--k do you think he'll be playing with?

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#16 Lawndemon
January 07 2014, 10:57AM
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Clearly this matches up with Babcock's preference for forward pairs:

Crosby - Kunitz Getzlaf - Perry Toews - Sharp

In a tournament where quick chemistry is critical, these selections are outstanding. This means only one guy has to adapt and Babcock can make changes on the fly.

Based on this logic, the biggest surprise to me is Hamhuis instead of Seabrook.

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#17 He Who Knows
January 07 2014, 12:47PM
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Hey Gregor, I heard Lowe is going to be on your show today. This is your chance to grill his ass and let him know the fan base despises him. Thanks.

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#18 CaptainLander
January 07 2014, 10:35AM
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Marleau is a surprise to me

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#19 A-Mc
January 07 2014, 11:33AM
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Zarny wrote:

Nash had 42 pts in 44 games last year and played great. He has looked less than himself after the concussion this year and I agree there are better picks.

But to say Nash is an "OK" player is ridiculous.

OK players don't even get mentioned in the group of players cut before making final cuts for invitations to the orientation camp.

So what?

St. Louis had 60, Eric Stall 53 and Taylor hall 50.

Mike Ribeiro had more points than Nash last year, with 49

Giroux had 48, Ladd had 46 and Kadri had 44, Moulson had 44 and Parenteau had 43pts.

Who gives a flying F#ck that Nash had 42 points last season.

With the super stars that comprise Team Canada, Nash is simply "OK". There are definitely better options.

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#20 Rondo
January 07 2014, 11:01AM
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They're $hittie wrote:

Halls team is why he lacks defense. With team Canada defense he will not be exposed.

Why is it that no one mention's Hall on TSN poll biggest omissions?

He really hurt himself playing for Canada last year. He continued to do his drag move and lose the puck and put his center and winger in bad position . Duchene was clearly the better player. Hall does not play a 200ft game.

I think Hall's competition for a place on the team was Duchene Giroux and Martin St louis. He comes in 3rd

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#21 OilDieHard
January 07 2014, 11:35AM
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FSD wrote:

Look at all these Oiler fans talking about who should and should not be on the team.

Your credibility is lacking most of you thought the Oilers were a playoff team this year.

Ha Ha Ha

enter the trolls....

i wouldn't have taken Vlasic or Hamhuis over Seabrook, but other than that, it's a pretty good selection of players.

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#22 OilDieHard
January 07 2014, 11:39AM
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corky wrote:

Whats laughable is that Kevin Lowe is still part of this Team Canada "brainstrust".

Lowe would actually have to have a brain to be part of a braintrust...

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#23 He Who Knows
January 07 2014, 02:01PM
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Rick Stroppel wrote:

A TIME AND A PLACE

Listen buddy, this is the place to talk about the Olympic team, not the Oilers! Everybody knows that Lowe is a CONCEITED, EGOTISTICAL NINCOMPOOP, but this is not the appropriate place to point that out!

Listen buddy, we will talk about Lowe anywhere and everywhere, even on Ellen if we have to because that POS does not belong in any executive capacity period. So there's always a time and place.

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#24 Rondo
January 07 2014, 10:52AM
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Duchene is one of the fastest skaters in the NHL . When he played last year with Hall for Canada he was clearly the better player. Hall's lack of a 200ft game and no playoff experience hurt him.

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#25 Tim in Kelowna
January 07 2014, 10:59AM
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Gregor,

I agree Nash was a questionable pick. But I would have put St. Louis on the team. His speed, experience, and chemistry with Stamkos make him a perfect fit for this team.

My guess is there will be two injuries up front in the next month and Giroux and St. Louis will be on the team.

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#26 Oilerz4life
January 07 2014, 11:21AM
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Your article failed to mention that the Edmonton Oilers are being considered to represent the best that Canada has to offer in Interpretive Ice Dancing at the Sochi Games.

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#27 Sid
January 07 2014, 12:37PM
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Lets face the truth Hall looked horrible on the big ice last year for Canada. He looked like a Junior hockey player using his speed to go through 5 players. It did not work and Ruff benched him. Sorry but that is the truth.

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#28 Rama Lama
January 07 2014, 10:51AM
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No matter who make these decisions, it's always going to be political and there will always be unhappy people.

What I don't understand is WHY Rick Nash or how Rick Nash made this team? Did I miss something or is there some awkward pictures he has of Stevie Y?

We could have two teams in there. The big ice surface will demand the best skaters and I'm not convinced this team was chosen on that basis?

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#29 He Who Knows
January 07 2014, 11:46AM
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I thought Kevin Lowe was comic relief for team Canada executives. Claude Giroux not making the team was probably Lowe's bright idea..Erroneous Erroneous

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#30 Tikkanese
January 07 2014, 02:46PM
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stg wrote:

Are you kidding me hes a 4th liner for edmonton how would he possibly make team canade

Geez, the joke went way over your head and those who put thumbs down on the comment as well. How was that not painfully obviously a joke?

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#31 Fish
January 07 2014, 10:36AM
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I can't stand Nash. People are in love with the guy because of his size, hands and he skates well. He scores the occasional highlight goal, but his production is nothing to write home about. Definitely the most overrated player in the league. James Neal should be pissed. Duchene Carter is ???? for me. Giroux and St. Louis should bether.

Seabrook off is a tough one as well.

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#32 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 07 2014, 10:45AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

Kunitz, Marleau, Nash, are mind boggling.

Duchene, Carter are bubble boggling.

D looks good.

Looks like Hockey Canada puts a premium on 1) Talent 2) Experience 3) Size

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#33 pkam
January 07 2014, 10:54AM
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Vernon Huynh wrote:

i would argue the biggest surprise is no MSL...we had lemieux in 2002 as our veteran, 2006 was sakic, and 2010 was iggy....i don't see our veteran leader on this team

Patrick Marleau does not count?

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#34 Fish
January 07 2014, 11:01AM
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Anyone picking Marleau over St. Louis is nuts. And don't say size is the difference. THE last person Marleau hit was... I don't see any fire in that guy, and it's not like he ramps it up for the playoffs. St. Louis is wicked fast, and if you watch him make decisions with puck (especially on the PP), he's lightening in his decision making and distributes the puck so well it's tough to defend. He should be there for sure.

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#35 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 07 2014, 11:29AM
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Oilerz4life wrote:

Your article failed to mention that the Edmonton Oilers are being considered to represent the best that Canada has to offer in Interpretive Ice Dancing at the Sochi Games.

And Gagner's in the Luge! The guy LOVES to slide on ice!

And bonus....his feet don't hang over the back of that little wee sled!

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#36 bwar
January 07 2014, 11:45AM
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Rick Nash? Thats a typo right? Surely I misread that. Seems to me there are numerous players more deserving of a roster spot than Rick Nash.

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#37 Vernon Huynh
January 07 2014, 10:36AM
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i would argue the biggest surprise is no MSL...we had lemieux in 2002 as our veteran, 2006 was sakic, and 2010 was iggy....i don't see our veteran leader on this team

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#38 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 07 2014, 10:39AM
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I'm excited to watch Team Canada in Sochi.....but I'm a little surprised that we always talk about Canada's depth and being able to send two teams etc...and then you get a team with a Kunitz, an under performing Nash, an injured Stamkos, guys like Tavares and Duchene having to play out of position, and goaltending that may not match up to the best goaltending in the tournament.

Still, it's a great team who we can all get behind and enjoy the 2 weeks in February.

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#39 Rondo
January 07 2014, 10:48AM
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Logan Couture and Giroux surprised me the most.

Nash has been one of the best international player for Canada consistently.

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#40 They're $hittie
January 07 2014, 10:56AM
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Rondo wrote:

Duchene is one of the fastest skaters in the NHL . When he played last year with Hall for Canada he was clearly the better player. Hall's lack of a 200ft game and no playoff experience hurt him.

Halls team is why he lacks defense. With team Canada defense he will not be exposed.

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#41 Me
January 07 2014, 11:01AM
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They're $hittie wrote:

If Gagner gets traded to Pittsburg and plays RW with Crosby does that mean he qualifies for the olympics?

Also if Kunitz is there to play with crosby and we know he is not one of the best four LWs than why would Seabrook not make the team to play with Keith when he is a better option than Hamhuis or Vlassic.

They made this choice based on handedness and not skill. So instead of the better player with more skill and playing with his partner for chemistry they decided to take an inferior player because they dont think elite players can take a pass on their back hand.

So....these guys don't have skill?

And how is having all this "skill" working for the oilers?

IDIOT.

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#42 Wintoon
January 07 2014, 11:10AM
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Sisyphus your comments are on the money. It doesn't matter how well a player plays, it matters how well a player's team plays.

That does not bode well for Hall, Eberle or RNH in the future.

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#43 Zarny
January 07 2014, 12:42PM
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Sid wrote:

Lets face the truth Hall looked horrible on the big ice last year for Canada. He looked like a Junior hockey player using his speed to go through 5 players. It did not work and Ruff benched him. Sorry but that is the truth.

Let's face the truth, Hall turned 22 less than 2 months ago.

In Vancouver, Canada had one 22 y/o on the team...Sidney Crosby. Everyone else was 24+. And Hall is 3 months younger than Crosby was in 2010.

Hall has barely played 200 NHL games. He was the youngest player at the orientation camp by almost a year. Duchene was the only other '91 invited and he's 10 months older than Hall with almost 100 more NHL games experience.

It's not surprising when a 21 y/o struggles a bit. It really isn't. Not even in the slightest.

That is the truth.

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#44 Rick Stroppel
January 07 2014, 01:57PM
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corky wrote:

Whats laughable is that Kevin Lowe is still part of this Team Canada "brainstrust".

A TIME AND A PLACE

Listen buddy, this is the place to talk about the Olympic team, not the Oilers! Everybody knows that Lowe is a CONCEITED, EGOTISTICAL NINCOMPOOP, but this is not the appropriate place to point that out!

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#45 RexHolez
January 07 2014, 03:09PM
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How come all the hockey canada managers come from winning teams accept Kevin Lowe? 1 of these things is not like the others....

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#46 The 'Real' Ron Burgundy
January 07 2014, 10:48AM
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Could Giroux have declined a few world championship invites and a grudge of sorts has formed?

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#47 Bad Choice
January 07 2014, 11:23AM
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What happens if Crosby gets hurt? Kunitz is useless without him.

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#48 Tikkanese
January 07 2014, 11:25AM
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World Cup is superior to the Olympics.

1. Every team gets an actual training camp. This eliminates the debates over who should have been named to the team. It also creates chemistry for the teams by not relying on one or two practices for that chemistry.

2. No interupted NHL schedule

3. No condensed NHL schedule

4. No 5 A.M. game times due to time zone issues

5. Gives us hockey in the summer

6. The players will like it better as they will get paid for it as opposed to the Olympics

7. If Olympics are back to the amateurs, it gives the possibility of another "Miracle On Ice" to happen again

8. An amateur Olympic program in the past gave us great players such as Cliff Ronning, that would have never made it otherwise. It also strengthens other tournaments such as the Spengler Cup

9. There would be more parity in the Olympics. Even the USA domination of basketball is another example for things to change

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#49 Zarny
January 07 2014, 11:30AM
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Jason wrote:

Didn't like Mike Smith over MA Fleury.
Didn't like Dan Hamhuis over Brent Seabrook
Didn't like Jeff Carter and Rick Nash over Martin St. Louis and Claude Giroux.

Can live with the rest.

MA Fleury has consistently played like garbage in the playoffs the last few years. He had zero chance of making the team.

Hamhuis shoots left; Seabrook shoots right.

I agree with St. Louis and Giroux over Nash for sure. Carter less so. I'm not convinced he'll be as effective on big ice but he scores G and has come up big in the playoffs.

Playing good when it counts and with all of the pressure counts and it counts a lot.

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#50 Oilerz4life
January 07 2014, 11:42AM
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pelhem grenville wrote:

...yikes can you and all the rest of the smarmy types here stop with the Oiler jabs?

this is the OLYMPIC TEAM we're talking about!

Sorry, I forgot that this is OILERSNATION.COM. What are you the blog police?

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