Thursday, August 20, 2009

US Olympic Camps linkorama

  • The 2009 USA Hockey Women's National Festival is currently underway, starting yesterday and running through Monday the 24th. The festival is serving as the selection camp for the 23-player 2009-10 US Select Team that will participate in the Qwest Tour (Sept 25 - Feb 4), the National Women's Invitational Tournament (Aug 26 - Sept 6, Vancouver), and the Four Nations Cup (Nov 2 - 8).

    The 23-player Select Team roster will be announced on Monday. (In mid-December, the roster will be pared down to 21 players for the Olympic Games.)

    Badgers at the camp include Molly Engstrom, Kerry Weiland, Jinelle Zaugg Siergiej, Erika Lawler, Jessie Vetter, Hilary Knight, Meghan Duggan, Geena Prough, Brianna Decker, and Chanda Gunn.
  • The US Men's Olympic orientation camp wrapped-up yesterday. Unlike the Women's Festival, this camp was more about team-building than anything else.

    34 players participated. Team USA GM Brian Burke says right now that 14 players have locked-up spots on the team. Kevin Paul DuPont of The Globe and Mail speculates on which players are likely to make the roster.

    Badgers at the camp were Brian Rafalski, Ryan Suter, Tom Gilbert, and Joe Pavelski.
  • Bob at the Fifth Feather attended one of open sessions during the camp and shares his experience. (Thanks to Illegal Curve for the link.)

    Finally, Brian Rafalski was introduced last to a loud chorus of boos and even a little “Detroit Sucks!” chant. (Maybe I should have just gone to work.)

    Then, following introductions, the players skated around the rink, stretching and talking. As players skated by the side of the ice with bleachers, people screamed things at select players with little interference from rink noise typical in NHL stadiums. “Brian Rafalski, you suck!” said one man, who brought the easily amused crowd to a roar.

    “He’s on the Red Wings” I heard one man say to another. (It’s usually not funny if you have to explain it.) Rafalski acknowledged the yelp with a slight smile and a wave.
    Don't you just love Brian Rafalski?
  • Down Goes Brown, a Maple Leafs blog, gives us their own special "behind the scenes" from the camp. Sure, they take some shots at Joe Pavelski, Tom Gilbert, and Dany Heatley, but I think it's hilarious. (Once again, thanks to Illegal Curve for the link.)