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01-04-2013, 12:17 AM
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2002 was the last great hurrah of the "old guard" the generation of great USA hockey players who grew into the game as kids following the 1980 Olympics. They notably lead the US to its only best on best championship in the 1996 World Cup. After a disappointing performance in the 1998 Olympics they rebounded nicely in 2002 but were all veterans by that point.

The group that followed of players who came up in the 1990s was pretty disappointing. The new generation however looks much more promising and World Juniors results in recent times reflect an improved group of Americans that are entering the NHL and will compete for Olympic rosters from this point on. 2010 had a ton of youth and there's lots of new competition emerging.

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