While it’s not known whether Canadians will actually care about watching men play hockey at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Team Canada today announced the players that will be representing the country at the Games.
As expected, general manager (and former Canucks goalie) Sean Burke, as well as coach Willie Desjardins (yep, the same one who drove the Canucks into the NHL’s basement) assembled a cavalcade of former NHLers and those playing pro overseas to take the ice in South Korea.
While the team will be in tough against teams like Olympic Athletes from Russia (anyone else laugh at that being the actual name?), who still have many high level players that have stayed in the country to play in the KHL, Team Canada will still be expected to challenge for a third consecutive Gold Medal in men’s hockey.
Check out Hockey Canada’s site for the full roster.
• Vancouver fans will have fun going over the list, recognizing former Canucks. Chief among them has to be Mason Raymond, one of the more popular players to don the Orca over the last few years. But players like Derek Roy, Maxim Lapierre, and Linden Vey are no doubt also remembered by fans. Marc-Andre Gragnani and Andrew Ebbett? Not so much.
• Former Vancouver Giant Gilbert Brule makes the team, and one has to think that he’s going to lead this team in scoring, just based on how dynamic he was in junior.
• All three goalies spent time in the NHL, mostly as backups. It could truly be a toss-up between Justin Peters, Kevin Poulin, and Ben Scrivens for who starts. It’s not Brodeur, Joseph, and Belfour, but it’s something, and it’ll be interesting to watch.
• Yo, did you not hear me earlier? Max Lapierre made the team! Watch him stir shit up and fight people, which never happens in the Olympics.
• It was only 2014 when Montrealers were going crazy for Rene Bourque in the playoffs. He played in the NHL last year but couldn’t garner interest from any team this year. He figures to be a power forward and a force for Team Canada.