Last Wednesday and just a few hours ago we found out which players would represent Canada and the United States in the Vancouver games next month. Both General Managers of Canada (Steve Yzerman) and the United States (Brian Burke) have made horrible omissions of players while including players that are not as deserving to represent their nations.
First off the Canadian roster....
Two bones to pick here.
First off though I admire Beregeron's talent and comeback from concussion issues, there are far better options. Martin St. Louis and Ryan Smyth being amongst those. St. Louis has better skills, faster, and more experienced. Smyth simply has the grittiness that has made him referred to as Captain Canada and excluding Captain Canada from Canada's game on the World Stage (in Canada) is a mortal sin. Long story short St. Louis can score goals and Smyth can be the hero.
The second is the choosing of Doughty over Mike Green. Doughty is a talented defenseman on an improving LA Kings squad, but Mike Green is downright lethal on the powerplay. And unlike other offensive-minded defensemen, he is far from a liability on defense so the decision to pass on a first line multi-use defenseman is questionable at best.
Now the USA squad...
Brian Burke haters rejoice because he has provided you material for some more hatred.
Disappointing to see assistant coach and New York Islanders coach Scott Gordon's player (Kyle Okposo) not get a roster spot but strangely enough the other assistant coach, and New York Rangers coach John Torterella, was able to have Chris Drury (no major problems he's a Team USA mainstay) and Ryan Callahan get a spot.
Kyle Okposo has done far more than Ryan Callahan and has far more to offer. Brian Burke cites Callahan's foot speed and him being in the league leaders for hits. Kyle Okposo is a multi-use power forward who can make the power move to the net and can forecheck well, something that Scott Gordon has taught him over the past year and half.
The other main concern is the lack of Olympic experience. Only Rafalski, Drury, and Langenbrunner have played in past Olympics. Perhaps adding Bill Guerin (over Callahan) or Scott Gomez would help provide more experience for the team.
Team Canada is facing the serious chance of missing out on a medal on home ice and team USA could use another Miracle on Ice but if both teams don't medal then there are two men and only two men who you can blame.
Steve Yzerman and Brian Burke