Canada’s 2022 Olympic roster is downright Frightening
With the NHL regular season ending early due to the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the positives to come out of it all has been the modified collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and NHLPA. In particular, the fact that Olympic participation in 2022 is included marks a huge win for Hockey fans wanting to watch the best players in one setting. While there is no doubt NHL is the creme de la creme of talent a lot of times they are on opposing teams. 2022 will give fans a chance to see some of these players side by side or at least on the same team.
One of the more enticing teams is our neighbors to the north… the home of Hockey… Canada. Just their forward line alone is enough to give hockey defenses around the world nightmares. Just imagine having a center core of Connor McDavid, Nathan MacKinnon, Sydney Crosby, and John Tavares and that’s before we get onto wings and defense. Ultimately you have the three best players in the game right now in McDavid, MacKinnon, and Crosby leading their own lines while also having the possibility of putting all three on a line together should you need an extra spark. Even the thought of that is scary.
Then you have options like Brayden Point, Mitch Marner, and Brad Marchand as wings, while by the time 2022 rolls around also having the possibility of this year’s number one draft pick Alexis Lafrenière to choose from. Marner already plays on a line with Tavares meaning the chemistry is already there while Marchand is a part of the Andy O’Brien summer training camps that include MacKinnon and Crosby. Then there is Brayden Point of the Tampa Bay Lightning who had a 92 point regular season last year followed by a 64 point season this year.
We also haven’t mentioned Taylor Hall, Patrice Bergeron, Stanley Cup winner Ryan O’Reilly, fastest skater winner Mathew Barzal or Flyers Center Sean Couturier.
Then we come to the defense where it all starts with Colorado Avalanche stud Cale Maker. The Calgary, Alberta native set a new Avalanche franchise record with goals scored by a rookie and is a front runner for the Calder Trophy. Canada can also call on the services of Ottawa Senators young D-man Thomas Chabot while also have the experience of Morgan Reilly (Toronto Maple Leafs) and Drew Doughty (LA Kings). Alex Pietrangelo (St Louis Blues), Dougie Hamilton (Carolina Hurricanes) and Josh Morrissey (Winnipeg Jets) could also find themselves in the line up although young stars like Bowen Byram (Colorado Avalanche), Evan Bouchard (Edmonton Oilers) and Noah Dobson (New York Islanders) have two years to play themselves into contention too.
In goal you would think Marc-Andre Fleury of the Vegas Golden Knights will be too old at 37 years old, but how many times has the Quebec native been told that before only to prove everyone wrong. Carter Hart (Philadelphia Flyers) and Jordan Binnington (St. Louis Blues) are the two younger options whom will most likely get the nod, but Canada will also have the choice of Carey Price (Montreal Canadiens) as well as Braden Holtby (Washington Capitals) and Matt Murray (Pittsburgh Penguins) should they be able to bounce back from an average regular season.
With a litany of stars, Canada will likely go into the 2022 Olympics as favorites and it’s hard to see anyone being able to beat them out.