It’s that special time every four years when select NHL players trade in their team colors to don those of their homeland.
The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, will be an even bigger stage for players who have the honor of representing their country. The Detroit Red Wings consistently boast a number of players in the Olympic Games, and this season is cut from the same cloth.
The Red Wings are sending 12 of their own to Sochi, and it will be a momentous experience for all. Four of the Red Wings will be making their first Olympic experience in Tomas Tatar and Tomas Jurco (Slovakia), Jonathan Ericsson (Sweden) and Jimmy Howard (USA).
Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg will each suit up for their fourth Olympics, and both will experience their first as team captain. That’s a testament to the leadership Detroit has in its own locker room.
Jonas Gustavsson will make his second Olympic appearance, and Daniel Alfredsson will make his fifth—both for Team Sweden. Head coach Mike Babcock will return behind the bench for Team Canada and GM Ken Holland is a member of Canada's management group.
Detroit’s 12 Olympic participants will certainly make their countries proud, but their performance has yet to be scrutinized, and it’s time to play the devil’s advocate. Here are the pass-fail marks for all 10 of the Olympic-bound Detroit Red Wings' players.