Several former Avalanche players named to Canadian Olympic hockey team

Doug Mendoza
January 12, 2018

Despite the presence of former NHL veterans like Mason Raymond, Ben Scrivens, Max Lapierre and Chris Kelly Roy and others, those visiting the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto Thursday afternoon were largely unfamiliar with the new Team Canada.

"We'll have a hard-working, competitive team", said Hockey Canada VP Scott Salmond, who helped Burke and assistant GM Martin Brodeur pick the roster along with assistants Dave King, Scott Walker and Craig Woodcroft.

"Hockey Canada has once again left no stone unturned in putting this talented group of players together", said Chris Overholt, CEO and secretary general of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

Brule, a 31-year-old forward, is well-known to Vancouver area hockey fans as a star with the Vancouver Giants WHL team from 2003 to 2006.

"More than anything, we have the character throughout the lineup that gives us the opportunity to be a very hard team for everybody else to play against", said Desjardins, whose most recent gig was head coach of the Vancouver Canucks from 2014 to 2017. Thursday's announcement revealed a 25-man roster, 14 forwards, eight defensemen, and three goalies.

Which is why, when the men's Olympic hockey tournament gets going next month, it'll be easy enough to get behind Canada's entry, even if an Olympics without NHLers will make supporting Canada a wholly foreign exercise to anyone who doesn't remember the Olympics without NHLers. "It will be a gold medal effort, and there won't be one guy who puts his jersey on that this isn't the highlight of his hockey career". Women get a chance to first start putting on the national sweater with that maple leaf as part of the under-18 team, then there's the national development team that plays a three-game series with the United States each summer along with other events.

Canada has won the last two Olympic gold medals-2010 in Vancouver and 2014 in Sochi.

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To give you an idea of the calibre of talent that will be joining Raymond, Kelly and Scrivens for a pre-Olympic training camp that begins January 28 in Latvia, consider that the best player named to the roster - at least, in terms of relevant in-season statistics - is probably Linden Vey.

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.

Thirteen players come from the KHL, four from the Swiss league, three each from Sweden and the American Hockey League, and one from Germany and Austria. "... These guys are both pros, they're both every experienced on the Europe ice, and they have the ability to keep their team in the game". "And I just wanted to do everything I could to be a part of that team".

Training camp starts January 28 in Latvia for the Canadians.

The 2018 Olympics take place February 9-25. "I don't think you could say we missed anybody".

Leggio, a graduate of St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute now plays in Germany for EHC München of the DEL and has represented Team USA in two IIHF Men's World Championships in 2010 and 2014.

Other reports by GizPress

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