Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter
The suspense is over—TSN is reporting that Ryan Getzlaf will be on Canada’s Men’s Hockey roster.
Getzlaf, who had injured his ankle when he become tangled up with Los Angeles Kings forward Dustin Brown in Monday night’s NHL tilt, underwent an MRI on Tuesday. The results of the MRI were inconclusive at the time, leading Team Canada Executive Director Steve Yzerman to ask Philadelphia Flyers forward Jeff Carter to be on standby as a possible replacement.
Carter flew to Vancouver soon after the Flyers last game before the Olympic break and has since sat patiently awaiting Yzerman’s final decision.
Sunday evening Getzlaf suited up for the Anaheim Ducks. It was the first game action he had seen since his injury and, by all accounts, was to be the measuring stick for which Yzerman would determine his readiness to play for Canada.
Getzlaf left everything on the ice Sunday night, leading the Ducks to a convincing 7-3 victory over the lowly Edmonton Oilers, scoring two goals and adding two assists, for a tremendous four point night.
After the game Getzlaf lamented that he was ready to go and would like to be a part of Team Canada.
All Olympic Hockey Team had to submit their 23-man rosters by noon today and, by all accounts, Getzlaf is on the list, which means Carter will miss out on his dream of representing Canada in Vancouver.
No question about it, Getzlaf’s absence would have been a huge loss for Canada, one that could have been the difference between a gold medal and a silver or bronze.
Getzlaf is known as a gritty player who is tough to move in front of the net. He is a highly-skilled, physical player who has tremendous chemistry with Ducks teammate Corey Perry—who is likely to line up alongside Getzlaf on Canada’s second line.
Through 56 games with the Ducks this season, Getzlaf has registered 17 goals, adding 44 assists for 61 points, good enough for 18th overall in NHL scoring. He will be relied upon to bring the all-important secondary scoring to Canada’s Hockey Team and be a big part of Canada’s special teams as well.
While Carter would have been a decent replacement player, he is very different from Getzlaf in that he is more of a sniper and not nearly the defensive player that Getzlaf is.
Getzlaf’s inclusion is a huge boast for the Canadian squad—who also had a scare when first line forward Sidney Crosby took a puck off his ankle in a game against the Nashville Predators last night. Crosby’s loss would have been catastrophic. Thankfully it appears as if Crosby is alright, as are Canada’s hopes for a gold medal.
Until next time,