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2018 Olympic Hockey Tournament

Discussion in '2018 Winter Olympics' started by scotian1, Jan 11, 2018.

  1. scotian1

    scotian1 Member SoSH Member

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    Well this years tournament seems like a difficult one to handicap with so many unknowns or relatively unknowns as participants. I know the Canadian team has participated in several tournaments, has the American team had any games as of yet?
    Here is the Canadian roster.:
    https://www.hockeycanada.ca/en-ca/team-canada/men/olympics/2018/2018-men-olympic-hockey-team
    Over half of the Canadian roster are currently playing in the KHL.
    Bruin fans will be familiar with one of the Canadian forwards; Chris Kelly.
    Here is a link to the U.S. roster:
    http://teamusa.usahockey.com/news_article/show/871007?referrer_id=2389102
     
  2. Dummy Hoy

    Dummy Hoy Angry Pissbum SoSH Member

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    Chris Kelly! Nice.

    What’s actually nice is seeing 5 MA boys on the US squad.
     
  3. TFP

    TFP Dope Dope

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    Rene Bourque and Maxim Lapierre on the team and Scott Walker on the coaching staff? Couldn't be rooting harder against them.

    I do hope that Kelly scores all their goals.
     
  4. MiracleOfO2704

    MiracleOfO2704 not AWOL SoSH Member

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    No one else has finalized their roster as of yet. I’d have to imagine that the “Russian Athletes”team has to be heavy favourites, since they’re only lose a handful of their better players, and will bring Kovalchuk, Datsyuk, Shipashov, etc.

    God, I can’t believe I’ll be told to cheer for Maxim Lapierre...
     
  5. jsinger121

    jsinger121 @jsinger121 SoSH Member

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    I wish the US had brought all college players
     
  6. TheYaz67

    TheYaz67 Member SoSH Member

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    Didn't want to start the very first thread of the new Olympics forum?
     
  7. scotian1

    scotian1 Member SoSH Member

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    Perhaps it can be moved there.
     
  8. Mugsy's Jock

    Mugsy's Jock Longtime Member Lifetime Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    If you haven't seen Ryan Donato play before, you're in for a treat.
     
  9. BigMike

    BigMike Dope Dope

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    Hopefully he is on one of the top 2 lines, and PP units. rather than say some AHL lifer
     
  10. Spacemans Bong

    Spacemans Bong chapeau rose SoSH Member

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    I'm enjoying the hodge podge rosters, there's something endearing about seeing "Oh yeah, that guy!" next to some AHL lifer next to some NCAA prospect.
     
  11. kenneycb

    kenneycb Hates Goose Island Beer; Loves Backdoor Play SoSH Member

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    And then the puck drops.
     
  12. TheRealness

    TheRealness Don't make him go all Lucic on your ash SoSH Member

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    I tweeted at Kevin Allen from USA Today about it asking if Donato would have a top 6 role, and this was his reply (I'm on my iPad and suck at embedding on this):

     
  13. ConigliarosPotential

    ConigliarosPotential Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    FYI, I discussed my experience of trying to communicate the newly announced Canadian Olympic hockey roster during my KHL commentary broadcast in the Media Forum. I'm finding it pretty crazy that as someone who has been commentating on the Champions Hockey League for four seasons and started commentating an average of 2-3 KHL games per week this season, I've had a direct line of sight to the European leagues from which probably 80-90% of the Olympic participants will be drawn...and this happens to be the year when I'm getting my first Olympic hockey assignment. I certainly wouldn't call myself an expert on European hockey, but suspect I'm more directly familiar with it than anyone who is going to be covering the tournament for NBC or the CBC, and possibly more than all but one or two English-speaking commentators based in Europe, so I'm really looking forward to getting involved from a position of relative strength. So if anyone has any questions, feel free to give me a shout.
    FWIW, there are only three AHL players on the Canadian roster, and only three AHL players and four NCAA players on the American roster. I think all the rosters are being updated on Wikipedia as they're finalized, if you want a ready reference point:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_hockey_at_the_2018_Winter_Olympics_–_Men's_team_rosters
     
  14. scotian1

    scotian1 Member SoSH Member

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    12,120
    #14 scotian1, Jan 12, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
  15. TheRealness

    TheRealness Don't make him go all Lucic on your ash SoSH Member

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    So knowing most of the players, do you have a country that you think should be th favorite? I think at first blush I put the Russians as favorites, but they can be very inconsistent.

    As for the Americans, do you have anyone from the Euro leagues that we should look out for? And do you think they are serious gold medal contenders?
     
  16. cshea

    cshea Member SoSH Member

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    From looking at some mock rosters, I think it has to be the Russians. They are going to have the best top end talent. Datsyuk, Kovalchuk, Markov, Shipachyov, Tryamkin, Slavia Voynov, etc. Older I guess, but I don’t see any other team that can get anywhere close to matching that talent.
     
  17. ConigliarosPotential

    ConigliarosPotential Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    I think Russia should be favored, and the bookies would seem to agree: for example, William Hill has them at 7/4, with Canada second at 3/1, Sweden third at 7/2, and everyone else 8/1 or higher (USA sixth favorite at 14/1). Russia has the advantage of having by far the most players in the best non-NHL league in the world, and having a tight-knit national team setup. The Americans and Canadians who play in the KHL are almost exclusively players who couldn't make the grade in the NHL and have given up hope of doing so, but many really good Russians in the KHL are young and/or haven't yet wanted to go to North America (e.g., CSKA Moscow's Kirill Kaprizov, a 5th round Minnesota draft pick in 2015 who is averaging a point a game in the KHL at age 20) or have returned from the NHL and still have plenty left in the tank (e.g., Ilya Kovalchuk, Pavel Datsyuk and Andrei Markov; Markov took a big pay cut to leave Montreal for Kazan in part because he wanted to be available for Olympic selection). At the recent Channel One Cup warmup tournament in Moscow in December, Russia picked a squad in which all but two players were from SKA St. Petersburg or CSKA Moscow, the two clubs that are by far and away the best two in the KHL, and that sort of continuity could really benefit them. Think of how the Spanish national soccer team is largely made of players from Real Madrid and Barcelona, then lose the crippling rivalry between those clubs, and that's what you'd have with a team full of SKA and CSKA players.

    For Team USA, goalie Ryan Zapolski - who plays for Jokerit in Finland, which is part of the KHL - is a really interesting story. Undrafted out of college, he played a few years in the ECHL, then made his way in 2013 to Lukko Rauma in the Finnish Liiga (the domestic league in which every Finnish club bar Jokerit plays) and became one of the Liiga's best goalies before moving to Jokerit in 2016. He leads the KHL in shutouts with 9 this season and has the fourth-best goals against average (1.61) and fifth-best save percentage (.937); at age 31, it might be too late for him to play in the NHL, but he's probably good enough to get a look in, and he'll be one of the best goalies in Korea next month. He should certainly start ahead of the other two goalies, David Leggio (who doesn't start every game for Red Bull Munich in the relatively weak German league, the DEL) and Brandon Maxwell (who plays for an unfancied team - Mlada Boleslav - in the Czech Extraliga). If the USA is to get into serious medal contention, it'll probably be on Zapolski's back.

    Zapolski has two Jokerit teammates with him for Team USA - former BU and ex-NHL defenseman Matt Gilroy is solid, while forward Brian O'Neill (Yale '12) is undersized but decent. One other notable name outside of the KHL is Noah Welch, a former Harvard man who plays in defense for Vaxjo Lakers, which leads the Swedish SHL (probably the second-best league in Europe behind the KHL) by 15 clear points and is in the semifinals of the Champions Hockey League, the top pan-European competition. I am rather puzzled by some of the teams where many of the USA players are based, though: the KHL and the SHL are good leagues, and the Swiss NLA is decent (the standard of play is slightly lower but the wages are a bit higher), but some of the players even in the NLA like Bobby Sanguinetti at Lugano, Broc Little at Davos or Jim Slater at Fribourg-Gotteron are with lesser teams and don't particularly stand out from their teammates. And I don't for the life of me understand why a player in the German second division (DEL2), James Wisniewski, is worthy of selection (regardless of however many NHL games he may have played in the past). So definitely a few head-scratchers there.
     
    #17 ConigliarosPotential, Jan 12, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
  18. kenneycb

    kenneycb Hates Goose Island Beer; Loves Backdoor Play SoSH Member

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    Zapolski sounds a bit like Tim Thomas, even down to the Jokerit connection. Obviously he probably won’t turn out that way but the stories have parallels.
     
  19. Spacemans Bong

    Spacemans Bong chapeau rose SoSH Member

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    If the USA gets a medal, it's a great story. If not, then it's just desserts. Same for Canada, although they might be favoured to win a medal anyway.
     
  20. kenneycb

    kenneycb Hates Goose Island Beer; Loves Backdoor Play SoSH Member

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    I’m more looking to be entertained by the hockey. It will be fine but hard to get as into it when most of the guys playing are of the “Oh, I remember when he played for [insert team]...or was that someone else?” It will probably be more akin to slightly-more-than-casual hockey fans’ watching habits of Workd Juniors.

    Regardless, fuck Canada and Russia.
     
  21. Dummy Hoy

    Dummy Hoy Angry Pissbum SoSH Member

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    Well yeah; I see zero downside to 2 weeks chock full of an international ice hockey tournament.
     
  22. Tokyo Sox

    Tokyo Sox Baka Gaijin Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    Not sure if this is the right place for it but just watching a news report that says SK and DPRK will play as one team for women’s ice hockey.
     
  23. Awesome Fossum

    Awesome Fossum Member SoSH Member

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    1,376
    Wow. I'm wouldn't have thought North Korea would have much of a program, but it looks like they lost to South Korea 3-0 last April in the DII World Championships, so it seems there's not too big a gap in quality.
     
  24. Ale Xander

    Ale Xander Member SoSH Member

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    10,343
    they're also going to march together in the OC under one flag.
     

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