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emfizz.com January 19, 2018


LONGLEY: No best-on-best but Olympic hockey won't be a bust

12 January 2018, 12:15 | Andy Ferguson

Athletes who are confirmed to be clean and drug free will be allowed to participate under the title Olympic Athlete from Russia

Canadian men's Olympic hockey team unveiled

Hockey Canada vice-president Scott Salmond said the team selection process had lasted 14 months, involving seven tournaments and more than 100 players. This season, he couldn't find an NHL contract, so he signed in the Swiss league with Bern, where he has 25 points in 26 games. The hockey tournament starts February 14. And if things get greasy, it's good to know Canada's 32-year-old Swiss-league fixture Maxim Lapierre has played nearly as many NHL games (614) as he has compiled NHL penalty minutes (586).

"We're going to draw on that but we also know that to win hockey games, we're going to need big performances, we're going to need guys who come into the Olympics and seize the moment", said Burke.

Borgen played on the Team USA National Junior Team that won a bronze medal in the 2016 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland.

"I don't recognize any of them", said hockey fan Josh Roy looking over the roster about half an hour after it was announced.

Once you accept saying so long to best-on-best - and remember Mike Babcock's star-studded gold medallists from Sochi weren't always easy on the eyes with their defensive domination - there is indeed plenty to look forward to in this tournament.

Leggio was offered a scholarship by his junior year and he emerged as the top goalie in ECAC Hockey, winning the Ken Dryden Award as Clarkson went on to win the ECAC Hockey Tournament and was a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, falling to UMass in a first-round game as its goalie, Jonathan Quick, shut out the Golden Knights 1-0 in double overtime.

Wolski suffered two broken cervical vertebrae, spinal cord trauma and a concussion when he crashed headfirst into the boards in October 2016 in a KHL game in Russian Federation.

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And Alberta's Mason Raymond spent two seasons with the Moose early in his career before going on to 546 career National Hockey League games with a variety of teams including Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Anaheim.

All but three of the Canadian players are now plying their trade in European leagues, with 13 of them coming from Russia's Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).

Canada opens play in a group with the Czech Republic, Switzerland and host South Korea.

Training camp starts January 28 in Latvia for the Canadians.

"We've had a lot of time to not only evaluate our players but have them together and we're going to get a good two-week training camp", Desjardins said.

Canada will be solid in goal, mobile on defence, skilled and experienced up front - and above all hard to play against, according to the team braintrust.

"It was a pretty special moment", Quinton said. The 33-year-old spent three seasons in the Buffalo Sabres' organization, playing for the minor-league clubs in Portland and Rochester from 2010 to 2013. Toews won two golds and Belfour won one.



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