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world juniors USA vs Canada starting shortly.

Also, we prob need a place to discuss Olympic hockey outside the impending Olympics theead proper.

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Yet another Canada/USA junior game that doesn't disappoint. Game of two halves really. USA clearly stronger for the first 30 minutes, then it all swung around hard.

 

Fucale stood on his head, that never hurts.

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He pulled a Luongo there at the end, though. Save shots he has no right doing so and then giving up a softie in a crucial moment.

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US Olympic roster to be named tomorrow! What the roster would look like (assuming health) if it was me picking it.

Centers:

Ryan Kesler

Joe Pavelski

Paul Stastny

David Backes

Brandon Dubinsky

 

Wingers

Zach Parise

Patrick Kane

Phil Kessel

Kyle Okposo

James Van Riemsdyk

Bobby Ryan

Dustin Brown

TJ Oshie

Jason Pominville

 

Defensemen

Ryan Suter

Ryan McDonagh

Erik Johnson

Keith Yandle

Kevin Shattenkirk

Cam Fowler

John Carlson

Paul Martin

 

Goalies

Ryan Miller

Jonathon Quick

Ben Bishop

 

 

Yes, I didn't put Pacioretty in. No, I didn't forget about him. I originally thought Pominville and Okposo were fighting for one spot in my list, but comparing those two to Mx, I had to leave Pacioretty off. Dude has 4 assists this year. FOUR!

 

Course I'm hearing there is gonna be a lot that makes me pissy about the roster this go around: we shall see.

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Pretty sure Howard is in.

 

He is. If I was doing a guess on what the roster actually would be, I'd change a few things. Howard over Bishop, Orpik making the team (for some damn reason) over Fowler, Pacioretty and Callahan in over Okposo and Pominville.

 

There is also the rumor that Bobby Ryan isn't going to make this team. That rumor is really really stupid, so I hope it isn't true.

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Why wouldn't Bobby make it?

 

I'm excited for tomorrow's Russia/USA game in the World Juniors.

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No Yandle and no Ryan.

 

I have no idea what the thinking is to justify either. And I'm not even curious to find out.

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Yeah, shooting themselves in the foot. Terrible calls.

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It's going to be awesome to see what is likely the worst US Olympic team in 30 years finish 5th in Sochi. I have no idea what they're thinking but this seems like a disaster.

Just saw on Twitter that allegedly a reason Bobby Ryan wasn't picked was because he's a "sleepy skater". This is why I hate hockey culture. "Sleepy skater". What the fuck.

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Is it bad that I thought that could have gone worse?

 

Yandle out while Orpik is in is fucking bad, but if our LD is Suter, McDonaugh, and Fowler, I'm perfectly fine with that. EJ not getting in isn't great, but I'm okay with Faulk. Defense pairings should be fine as well as we don't fucking go with Orpik over Fowler.

 

Forwards Forwards Forwards. No Ryan, No Okposo. Assuming we are going 3 scoring lines, we somehow turned our strongest spot of top 6 wingers into a weakness. Kessel, Kane, Van Riemsdyk, Pacioretty, Parise and... who? Ryan was, at worst, our 4th best offensive winger. Hell, Okposo and Pominville are better offensively then Van Riemsdyk and Pacioretty. Our Centers are locked down (People acting like putting in Stepan in is a huge fuck up need to realize he's our 5th center, aka, an extra), and Oshie-Backes-Wheeler/Callahan/Brown is a damn solid checking line... But who the fuck is the 3rd line winger?

 

Course, Callahan and Brown making the team in spite of speed issues, when i'm sure that will be the main thing the US sites as a reason not to select Bobby Ryan, makes them look like fucking idiots.

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It's still a good team, though the Yandle thing boggles my mind personally. I mean, I could make a case Yandle is the second best defenseman on that squad other than Suter. At worst he's 4th.

 

Pavelski might be the most underrated player in the world, so there is that.

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You really need a neutral person making these decisions.  Active NHL GM's or recently active NHL GM's making these calls raises all sorts of issues.

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I read most of it.  There's some good stuff in there, especially some of the really simplistic things they get stuck on like % of PP points that Bobby Ryan has this year. 

 

Dean Lombardi pushes hard for Yandle and you'd think they'd listen to the guy who has seen him the most over the last couple years. 

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lol, three of 9 GMs had Jack fucking Johnson ahead of Cam Fowler. It's unbelievable what goes through some of these guys' heads.

 

This sums it up, coming right after the "sleepy skater" comment:

Poile asks for a show of hands: "Are guys nervous about Bobby Ryan?" A flurry of hands go up in the air.

 

"That's a lot of guys," Poile notes.

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Okay, I haven't read the article yet, but I'm gonna toss in my take on the roster.

 

I'm warming up to the team, though I am not sure how we can beat the Canadians with it. We are geared on a basic strategy: 2 scoring lines, and 2 absolutely brutal to play against checking lines. The checking lines really are at the forefront of the team imo, so I'll cover them first. The US has two Selki caliber Centers in Kesler and Backes, and that is basically what they build around. You have Oshie, Wheeler, Brown, Callahan, and Pacioretty fighting for the winger spots on those lines, which could cause nightmares for almost any forward combination. Your top 6 is based on Pavelski and Stastny centering Parise (which could end up being Ryan, if his injury doesn't allow him to play) and Kane on one line, Van Riemsdyk and Kessel on the other.

 

The Defense is fast as all hell, reliable, and great at making the 1st pass. Suter/McDonaugh/Fowler, assuming that's there 3 on the Left, is a good basis, with Shattenkirk, Martin, and Carlson/Faulk on the Right. If Orpik sits, I actually really like this D for this tournament.

 

I see what they are going for. This team is built to defeat the "top heavy" teams of Sweden and Russia. The real question is: How do you beat Canada with it?

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I'm not sure how realistic it is for American fans to be that much more confident in their goaltending. Is Quick really going to snap into playoff god mode overnight?  Miller's doing the whole "good goalie on a bad team" thing but it's not like he's been first rate consistently since 2010.  

 

Canada will likely have Price and Luongo.  I'm comfortable enough with either guy.  If Canada needs either of them to stand on their heads to win, something has gone wrong but it's not like they're incapable of stringing together awesome performances.

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