Ranking Every 2014 Olympic Hockey Team's Blue Line

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Ranking Every 2014 Olympic Hockey Team's Blue Line
John Russell/Getty Images

Which Olympic team can expect the most support from its blue line this year in Sochi? Whether it's Sweden's Erik Karlsson, USA's Ryan Suter or Canada's Shea Weber, each Olympic team has its own set of strengths and weaknesses, which we can combine to form an overall ranking.

Analytics are notoriously limited when it comes to measuring a player's defensive contributions, but they can help determine what kind of competition a defenseman typically faces and how his team did when he was used in such situations.

Combine that with each player's offensive contributions and we can get a sense of each Olympic team's biggest strengths and weaknesses. Whether it's scoring, shutting down opponents, killing penalties, working with the man advantage, or a team's size, speed, age or experience, each Olympic nation has a certain character.

Beginning with a quick look at the five teams not expected to contend, each team will be reviewed and ranked in order of its greatest positive impact to its nation's medal hopes.

 

All advanced statistics are via writer's own original research unless otherwise noted.

 

 

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