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International Tournaments Discuss international tournaments such as the World Juniors, Olympic hockey, and Ice Hockey World Championships, as they take place; or discuss past tournaments.

If you had a chance to re-pick Team Canada...

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02-24-2010, 10:33 AM
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I didn't like some of the choices when they were first announced but there was no way to appease everyone. Everyone watches different players and has their opinions. If I were to have picked the team announced December 30th regardless of what has actually happened it would look like this:

(These are not actual forward line combinations, just names in a line format)

Crosby, Nash, Iginla
Heatley, Thornton, Marleau
Doan, Toews, Richards
Stamkos, Getzlaf, E. Staal
J. Staal.

This would mean I would not have picked Bergeron, Morrow, or Perry. I chose J. Staal because he's the best player in the NHL on the penalty kill. This gets overlooked far too often. You can play him anywhere and he can be a great grinder. Throw him on a line with Richards and Toews or Doan and that line could eat opponents.
The Doan and Morrow choice is a wash for me but if you are going to reward veterans, Doan has been consistent at the spring IIHF tournament for Canada. To me that is the 13th forward who can play in most types of roles/situations. I like Doan a little more than Morrow who hasn't looked very good since returning from knee surgery.
I add Stamkos because he's got tons of ability to score and he's young. You need fire power in this tournament.
I keep the Shark line together because you also need a little bit of chemistry sometimes.
I get rid of Morrow because, as I said, it is a wash. Doan/Morrow could easily be replaced by Carter but I like the grinder aspect of Doan/Morrow. Again, Morrow has not looked comfortable after knee surgery. I get rid of Bergeron for two reasons. 1. He was picked because of his playing experience with Crosby in hopes that they could find that chemistry again. Granted, Bergeron has looked GREAT all season and played his way on to the team but; 2. He got injured 3 weeks before the Olympics.
I get rid of Perry because he's probably the most selfish player on the team. Few people recognize this but he takes some of the dumbest penalties on the ice when he gets frustrated. This is a tournament where alot of guys get frustrated. With the first two, I didn't mind them. When Perry was announced, I shook my head. This was really the only bad call on forward at the time.

Defense Pairings (again, not actual pairings)

Niedermeyer, Weber
Keith, Doughty
Bouwmeester, Boyle

With defense, I sort of take a hindsight view with a couple of players and would have made some of these choices on December 30. For the Dec 30 deadline I would have left Pronger and Bouwmeester at home. With the vantage point of being 4 games in, I probably keep Seabrook at home and take Bouwmeester. I still keep Green off the list because he is a liability. Ditto for Phaneuf.
I've seen alot of people say keep Neids at home. I really disagree. He's a top notch leader and sometimes you need veteran presence on both the forward and defensive sides to calm guys or re-focus them. I almost have Niedermeyer in a 7th defenseman role rather than playing big minutes. Again, great leadership cannot be replaced.
When the team was announced on Dec 30 I was excited because of 1 player: Drew Doughty. This guy is already showing that he is awesome. He was a lock in my books before the NHL season started.
I keep Weber and Keith who have been the other two of the top 3 defensemen out there. I keep Boyle because he's got a little more defensive-minded play than a guy like Green. To me, Boyle and Green are almost a wash but include the chemistry with the Shark line and notice there are no Capitals on the Canadian team and you understand why Green stays at home.
I get rid of Pronger because he reminds me of Darian Hatcher against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2003/04 playoffs: a pylon. Yeah he is big and he's got winning under his belt but he's brutal with the speedy game of the IIHF. How can a guy be a good defenseman when he is spinning in circles trying to find the guy he should be covering?
I get rid of Seabrook with hindsight because he was selected due to his chemistry with Keith. We've now seen that Keith plays really well with Doughty as well so Seabrook now becomes a disposable defenseman. He hasn't been magical but then again, he's not in Chicago, the tandem just works well there.
I add Bouwmeester with hindsight from 4 games in because if Seabrook is not there, I would rather have Bouwmeester take his place. This guy was probably weighed down because of where he played in Calgary. Bouwmeester is one of those left-hand shooting defenseman that has to play the left side. Most left-hand shooting defenseman can interchange with the left and the right well because they have dominant right hands but play the game left. Bouwmeester played much of the year in Calgary on the right point. Since trading Phaneuf, he has played more on the left side and has looked more like his old self.
I add Tyler Myers as I take out Pronger. Simply for numbers. This kid is awesome. There could be arguments that if I am taking another young guy, why not Del Zotto or M. Staal? I don't discount these guys but Myers is having a great year and it would be awesome to reward this guy. He's got the Pronger size with the skating ability of any other guy. He's going to be up there against Duchene as the RoY candidate. Anyone thinking Tavaras should give there head a shake. The RoY goes to one of these two guys.

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02-25-2010, 02:51 PM
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Bump, after last night

Staal- Crosby- Iginla
Marleau- Thornton- Heatley
Morrow- Getzlaf- Perry
Richards- Toews- Nash

Keith- Doughty
Bouwmeester- Weber
Niedermayer- Boyle


Canada's lines 3 and 4 clicked as well as they could have. Richards-Toews-Nash were outstanding shutting down Ovechkin and Malkin, plus they used their size, speed and skill to win battles and create chances of their own in the process.

Morrow- Getzlaf- Perry were outstanding as well. (see the Brendan Morrow thread for more discussion).

I'd still bring the Sharks, Thornton hasn't been excellent but hasn't been bad either. Heatley has scored some goals but hasn't really been noticed other than that. Marleau has been the best of the 3. If I was to pick this team today, I'd still have to include these 3 as a unit.

Lastly, obviously Crosby is there. Staal has played very well himself as well, I think he and Sid will gel together more the next game (and hopefully the one after). For the third spot on the line, can anybody justify leaving off Iginla? He's lit up the weaker teams obviously, hasn't done much against the better teams, but I wouldn't be able to leave him off knowing what he brings as far as size, skill, his shot, and his work ethic and leadership.

imo, this gives one spot. I think Bergeron hasn't really played well this tournament, and seems a step out of place with the rest of the team, he's the only one I'd say if the team were picked today, I wouldn't include him on it. Out of the candidates (Carter, Stamkos, St. Louis, B Richards, Lecavalier, Doan), I would have to go with Carter. Canada's main advantage, is size, speed, and skill, and of those players Carter is the best all around package. With a 13th forward, you look for a guy who could step in and play if someone goes down. Looking at the roster, I think Carter could replace any of Team Canada's Centers or RW's and play a game to mesh with their line. While there'd be some big losses, it wouldn't be a catastrophic downgrade (except Crosby).

On defense, Pronger has been just bad. Slow, not great in his own end, at least 1 bad penalty and always the possibility to take more, you'd have a tough time justifying his selection today. I went with Bouwmeester here instead of Pronger. Bouwmeester is much younger, a much better skater and much less likely to take a dumb penalty (both in general, and also for something like hooking/tripping as he is less likely to get beaten by half a step). While Bouwmeester's A game isn't as dominating as Pronger's A game, he's probably the safer much steadier pick.

I still wouldn't consider Green or Phaneuf, while they can be excellent, there's just too much risk defensively. Yeah, they'd be good #7 defensemen, but you just worry that if one (or two) defensemen go down and are out for the tournament, then they'd have to step in and take their place. Seabrook still gets the nod as #7 for me. Lastly, just can't see any way to not include Niedermayer as the Captain. He's lost a step from his prime but he's still an elite NHL defenseman, still a great skater, and smart with the puck, and the most experienced guy in EVERY level of hockey in that room.

With goalies, yeah Brodeur had a lousy game, but if the team were picked today, I'd still feel most comfortable with Luongo, Fleury and Brodeur (in order) in net for Canada.

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