Friday, January 03, 2014

USA Olympic Team provides for a few surprises on announcement day

As part of the festive atmosphere of Wednesday's Winter Classic, the US Olympic Hockey Team was unveiled, a listing of the names that has spurred on a fair amount of debate regarding some of those that will be left behind when the US team heads for Sochi in February.

The official announcement came following the Winter Wonderland experience of the Red Wings and Maple Leafs, offering up a spectacular setting and launching the run up to Sochi.

Twenty five players, many of them familiar from Vancouver of 2010, others the rising blend of youngsters and on the cusp of stardom veterans, all of them in the minds of the US Olympic team as the right mix, at the right time.

USA 2014 Olympic Roster 

The two biggest surprises of the scratches on the day, the omission of Bobby Ryan and Keith Yandle from the final 25.

Two key players, that when  left off the final list, left more than few observers shocked by the changing of the guard that the US has embarked upon for Sochi.

The simple fact of it all is that the hockey in the US is finally paying off many dividends for the sport and the US Olympic team is reaping the reward of the larger pool of talent now available than in the past.

From the College ranks and through experience in the World Juniors over the years, USA Hockey has clearly found that with more and more Americans taking up the sport and excelling at higher and higher levels, tough decisions are then part of the territory when it comes to the highest of profile selection sessions, such as the Olympic team.

It's an endless debate, who to pick, where to place them, one that has raged on in Canada for years ever since Professionals began to represent the country in International events. Like Canadians, American fans now enter the preview phase of their Olympic experience, where the average hockey fan weighs in  over who made the team and who has been passed over this time around.

A territory where there are more than enough thoughts on the topic to go around.

ESPN's Scott Burnside offers this fascinating glimpse into the selection process and how the US Olympic Team's managers put together their roster.

It gives much insight into the moving parts of the decision making and what factors are used when considering how each player fits together to the greater goal of the quest for Gold in Sochi.

As we gear up towards the Olympics, we will continue to update our lead up to Sochi Archive page, which can be found here.

Some of the reviews from Wednesday's announcement can be found below.

Leaf linemates Kessel, van Riemsdyk named to U. S. Olympic team
Team USA announces 2014 Sochi Olympics hockey rosters
Canadiens Pacioretty named to U. S. Olympic team
Dustin Brown, Jonathan Quick, Cam Flower named to U. S. Olympic team
Three Blues named to Team USA Olympic roster
Rangers' Ryan Callahan, Ryan McDonagh and Derek Stepan named to U. S. Olympic Hockey team
Kesler named to USA Olympic team
Blackhawks Kane named to Team USA 
Red Wings Jimmy Howard named to Team USA Olympic hockey team
US Olympic men's hockey roster loaded with talent
Miller gets nod for Olympic team
What I learned from U. S. Hockey selection process
Behind the scenes in choosing U. S. hockey team
Players react to Team USA snubbing them from Olympic roster
Ottawa Senators' Bobby Ryan fires back at Brian Burke for "gutless' comments
U. S. Hockey invites 67 year old Canadian to play in Sochi games
Jets' Wheeler says being an Olympian is 'surreal'
Yandle calls Team USA Olympic Snub a Tough PIll to swallow
Omissions could define U. S. roster

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