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James Neal (Canada)
The Oshawa, Ontario native is on pace to break the 40-goal barrier despite missing 15 games with an injury. Half of the games he's played have resulted in multi-point efforts, and he's only been held off the score sheet five times this year.
Yet James Neal is a bubble guy for Canada. He wouldn't be for any other country headed to Sochi, but at this juncture he's not a shoo-in. If he continues to produce at such a torrid pace then it's tough to imagine him not wearing the Maple Leaf, but he still have a bit of work to do to push a guy like Martin St. Louis off the roster.
Marc-Andre Fleury (Canada)
Marc-Andre Fleury's play during the regular season isn't the problem for Steve Yzerman and the rest of the minds that are picking Canada's final roster. It's how he plays when the pressure is on and a win is a must that is concerning.
While Fleury has been strong so far in 2013-14, there's just not enough distance between him and the playoff meltdown against the New York Islanders for him to be truly considered. Fair or not, "MAF" has the reputation of being a bit of a choker, and there's too much on the line for Canada to risk seeing that side of him flare up against a team like Russia or Sweden.
Paul Martin (USA)
Before fracturing his tibia, Paul Martin was a 50/50 guy for the United States. His four-to-six week recovery time just works against him now. Each and every Olympic hopeful knew that they had three months to impress their respective nation.
Now Martin is going to miss at least half that amount of time while recovering. Then there are the eventual questions about how strong and ready he'll be once the Games roll around.
With players like Seth Jones breathing down his neck for a spot as it is, this injury probably cost Martin a spot with the Americans in Sochi.
Kris Letang (Canada)
There's no denying that Kris Letang is one of the NHL's elite puck-moving defensemen. The thing is, Canada has several players with the same "smooth-skating, slick-passing" skill set that are performing over Letang's head this season.
He hasn't found his groove since returning at the end of October, and it'd take a monster push from him to garner consideration over P.K. Subban or Drew Doughty at this point. That's a tough draw for Letang, but that's the price of hailing from the most hockey-centric nation on the planet.