Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 7/19/13
The NHL and its Players’ Association agreed today to allow its players to represent their home countries in the 2014 Sochi Olympics in Russia. The Chicago Blackhawks will have their fair share heading to the games, whether fans want to see them overseas or not. Here is a list of who will go, should go, and could go to the 2014 Sochi Olympics. LOCKS Jonathan Toews (CAN), Patrick Kane (USA), Corey Crawford (CAN), Duncan Keith (CAN), Marcus Kruger (SWE), Niklas Hjalmarsson (SWE), Johnny Oduya (SWE), Marian Hossa (SVK) The core of the Blackhawks will be in Sochi. Toews, Kane, Keith, Oduya, and Hossa are carryovers from their 2010 national teams, and it is expected that Kruger, Hammer, and Crawford will join their countrymen. Crow is the longest shot of the locks, but if you can name a hotter goalie for Hockey Canada, I’d be shocked. SEMI-LOCKS Brent Seabrook (CAN), Michal Handzus (SVK), Michal Rozsival (CZE), Patrick Sharp (CAN) Seabrook played with Keith for a portion of the 2010 games, but was moved down as Keith played the heavy minutes for the gold medal winners. Sharp was a borderline roster player/snub four years ago, and would be the top snub if he cannot get on the roster this time around. Handzus and Rozsival are older, but should play with Slovakia and the Czech Republic, respectively. Of the four listed, I believe Seabrook is the long shot to make it to Sochi. LONG SHOTS Brandon Saad (USA), Nick Leddy (USA), Teuvo Teravainen (FIN) Leddy stands an outside chance to earn a role on a deeper-than-expected defensive group for the U.S. His puck-moving skills would be accentuated on an Olympic-size rink. Saad and prospect Teravainen may be looked at for 2014, but stand better chances of making their national teams in 2018 as long as their play stays on the up and up. The Men’s Hockey round-robin play and championship takes place February 12-23, 2014. The notable teams include the U.S., Russia, and Slovakia play in Group A (group of death), Canada and Finland in Group B, and Sweden and Czech Republic in Group C. The 2014 Sochi Olympics are much closer than you think! Follow me on Twitter @jeffrotull44 for more sports and entertainment ramblings. If you play fantasy sports, check out The Fantasy Fix, where my weekly column ‘Peaks and Valleys’ covers your add/drop/watch needs during baseball and hockey season. The post Chicago Blackhawks will be represented in 2014 Sochi Olympics appeared first on The Sports Bank.Net.
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