2014 - Canada Roster Discussion (Part IV)
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02-27-2013, 06:38 PM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Originally Posted by
When I look at Wayne Simmonds in a Team Canada context, I automatically think "4th line RW". Myself, and some others on here, are hoping and believing that the current iteration of Hockey Canada, led by Yzerman doesn't see players, or the roster that way. There are roughly 30 forwards of very high-quality that you could make a case for on Team Canada. Are you going to go with someone like Simmonds who, frankly speaking, doesn't have the skillset to mesh with someone like Crosby or Stamkos at the Olympic level and is basically only fit for 4th line duty, or someone like Rick Nash, who can play either wing position on any of the four forward lines and has excelled in both defensive and offensive roles for us in the past? Or Tyler Seguin, a guy with amazing speed and talent who already plays a very well-rounded game, has chemistry with a defensive stalwart in Bergeron, has been through the trials of a long Cup-winning run, and has excelled on the international ice surface?
To me the choice is clear - you go with your best players, and players with that level of talent can fill any role that they are asked to - rather than try to assign players to roster spots. Obviously we're not going to ask Stamkos to kill penalties, but you get the idea. What you described obviously worked well for the American junior team this past Christmas, but remember that these are junior-aged players, and systems and roles/responsibilities work better for players at that level, IMHO.
It also worked well for the US Olympic hockey team in 2010. They took players like Chris Drury and Ryan Callahan over players like Jason Pominville or Tim Connolly. The US still scored 3.33 goals per game. Having role players who know and accept their positions isn't just a junior thing.
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