Wednesday, April 8, 2009

2010 Olympics: What if we could only use amateurs?

In 1998, the NHL allowed it's professional hockey players to play in the Olympics for the first time in Nagano, Japan. They followed suit at the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, and the 2006 Olympics in Torino, Italy. In Vancouver in the spring of 2010, the NHL will once again send it's best to represent their countries on the biggest stage.

It's been widely debated on if the NHL should continue to send it's players to the Olympics. Never again will there be a moment like we had in the 1980 games with NHL players there. I'm not here to add to the debate on whether or not we should be sending NHL players. What I have done, is put together a roster of Americas best amateur players who could compete at the 2010 Olympics.

Obviously, this list is flawed for a few reasons. Number one, there will be players on my list who will end up turning professional this summer. Since I can't be 100% sure on everyone who is going to go pro, I included everyone who has not signed a pro contract yet that is American born. Also, we don't know who would have kept their amateur status to play in the Olympics. I didn't include any outgoing seniors and many of them would have been considered for this team otherwise.

Any ways, here is the list...let the debate begin:

Forwards (13, alphabetical order) :
Nick Bonino-Boston University-Hockey East
Carter Camper-Miami-CCHA
Blake Geoffrion-Wisconsin-WCHA
Jacques Lamoureux-Air Force-Atlantic Hockey
Ryan Lasch-St. Cloud-WCHA
James Marcou-UMASS-Hockey East
Rhett Rakhshani-Denver-WCHA
Garrett Roe-St. Cloud-WCHA
Tyler Ruegsegger-Denver-WCHA
Jordan Schroeder-Minnesota-WCHA
Eric Tangradi-Belleville-OHL
Mitch Wahl-Spokane-WHL
Colin Wilson-Boston University-Hockey East

Alternates (in order):
Bill Sweatt-Colorado College-WCHA
Anthony Maiani-Denver-WCHA
Chris VandeVelde-North Dakota-WCHA
Mike Hoeffel-Minnesota-WCHA

Defense (7, alphabetical order) :
Jonathon Blum-Vancouver-WHL
Ian Cole-Notre Dame-CCHA
Eddie Del Grosso-Nebraska Omaha-CCHA
Cade Fairchild-Minnesota-WCHA
Ryan McDonagh-Wisconsin-WCHA
Chris Summers-Michigan-CCHA
Kevin Shattenkirk-Boston University-Hockey East

Alternates (In order):
Garrett Raboin-St. Cloud-WCHA
Kurt Davis-Minnesota State-WCHA
Kyle Lawson-Notre Dame-CCHA
Justin Braun-UMASS-Hockey East
Brian Strait-Boston University-Hockey East
Colby Cohen-Boston University-Hockey East
Ted Ruth-Notre Dame-CCHA
Jeff Petry-Michigan State-CCHA

Goaltender (2, alphabetical order) :
Zane Kalemba-Princeton-ECAC
Alex Stalock-Minnesota Duluth-WCHA