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Sochi Snubs: Ryan heads list of U.S. Olympic omissions

Jan 1, 2014, 5:02 PM EDT

BobbyRyan Getty Images

Shortly after USA Hockey announced the players heading to Sochi for the 2014 Winter Olympics, a new discussion began — on who wasn’t going.

Ottawa forward Bobby Ryan, a silver medalist with Team USA at the 2010 games in Vancouver, and a pair of defensemen — ’10 silver medalists Jack Johnson and Erik Johnson — were left off, along with Kyle Okposo, the NHL’s second-leading American scorer this season, and Dustin Byfuglien, the top American d-man scorer.

Ryan, though, is the biggest and most high-profile omission.

The 26-year-old is a four-time 30-goal scorer and, as mentioned above, represented the U.S. at the Vancouver games, scoring two points in six conests. He’s also the fifth-leading American scoring forward this season and leads Ottawa in goals, with 18.

Ryan missing the cut shouldn’t come as a massive surprise, however. USA Today’s Kevin Allen — granted access to some of USA Hockey’s selection committee meetings — floated the idea in a recent piece where he made his own roster picks:

The most difficult decision was leaving off Bobby Ryan (Ottawa Senators). He might be en route to his fifth 30-goal season. His hands are exceptional. But the Americans are deep on the wing, and other players have more to offer.

Ryan is not a skater, nor a defensive zealot. [Jets forward Blake] Wheeler was my pick over Ryan because of his speed, size and reach. All are important on the wider surface.

Ryan also represented Team USA at the ’12 World Championships — a team that featured another snub, Columbus defenseman Jack Johnson.

Johnson, who has been a loyal soldier for the U.S. internationally — playing at numerous World Championships, captaining the ’12 team — won’t be going to Sochi. The 26-year-old currently leads all Blue Jackets skaters in TOI per game (23:18) but has struggled in other facets this year, recording just 11 points in 40 games with a minus-10 rating.

Another Johnson, Erik, will also miss out on Sochi after serving in Vancouver four years ago. The Colorado defenseman is having a strong campaign (17 points in 39 games, averaging 22:32 per night), repped the U.S. at the ’13 Worlds and believes he’s playing some of the best hockey of his career.

It’s worth noting the Johnsons are the only two omissions that played in Vancouver and got invited to this summer’s orientation camp.

As for other notable snubs…

Keith Yandle

Despite sitting third among all American defenseman in points (27), Yandle was bypassed. The development will be a disappointment for the 27-year-old rearguard, who told the Arizona Republic he liked his chances of making the team.

“I think I’ve given myself the best opportunity,” Yandle said. “I thought I’ve played well. I showed what I can bring to the team.”

Kyle Okposo

Okposo trails only Patrick Kane in scoring by American forwards — 14 goals, 40 points in 41 games — and is a veteran of the international game, having represented Team USA on a number of occasions at the Worlds.

Recently, Isles head coach Jack Capuano talked up Okposo for the Olympic team.

“His numbers are real good, but more importantly, this is a guy who’s been a leader wherever he’s been,” Capuano told Newsday. “He’s a high-character guy and those are important ingredients when you’re putting a team together like the Olympic team.”

Dustin Byfuglien

The big-bodied Winnipeg rearguard (6-foot-5, 265 pounds) brings a unique skill set, able to play both forward and defense. He’s also a versatile weapon on the power play. No American defenseman has more points this season (29), but Byfuglien also has a minus-11 rating and there are questions about his defensive game skating ability on international ice.


— Minnesota’s Jason Pominville sits fourth among American forwards with 17 goals, but didn’t make the cut. It’s worth noting Pominville wasn’t even invited to this summer’s camp, getting passed over in favor of the likes of Trevor Lewis and Nick Bjugstad.

— Tampa Bay’s Ben Bishop, who has the best stats of any American goalie this season, was bypassed in favor of Jonathan Quick, Ryan Miller and Jimmy Howard.

— None of the kiddie corps floated as potential roster players (Seth Jones, Alex Galchenyuk, Brandon Saad) made the team.

  1. alexcolesays - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:08 PM

    I still think Krug should of got the nod to make this team.

    • jennettalia - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:50 PM

      Lots of thumbs down. To be fair, the kid skates really well and is leading US D men in goals. He at least had a case.

    • 950003cups - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:51 PM

      This is a strange selection. They picked Paul Martin, Zach Parise, Johnathan Quick who all are currently injured.

      • 950003cups - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:55 PM

        Also, how was Brandon Dubinsky passed over for the likes of guys like Derek Stepan. Dubinsky is 3x more defensively responsible than half the guys they picked. Seems like someone FUBAR’d the Olympic hopes.

      • deann61 - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:02 PM

        I love Dubinsky’s heart, but Stepan has a proven track record on international ice, and will be used if they need more play making from the center position
        I see Statsny ad the 4th line center between Callahan and Brown

      • 950003cups - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:02 PM

        I forgot that Callahan is also injured.

    • thehockeyhawk - Jan 2, 2014 at 2:10 AM

      You see all the names not on the list, but you should look back to 1980 when there wasn’t a thread of hope. Team chemistry is 90% of the game. If a players style doesn’t match the rest of the team that player will not perform very well. This is a very large part in building an elite team. They wanted faster styled players this year. Hell if Herb Brooks was still alive he’d be calling the critics morons right now.

    • dccircuitboy - Jan 4, 2014 at 2:39 AM

      “should’ve”. dope.

  2. nj666 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:10 PM

    bobby ryan isn’t on the ducks anymore…

    • alicesrightfootesq - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:16 PM

      That’s how forgettable he’s played this year.

      • PhillySN - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:19 PM

        He’s been great for my fantasy team. Also I do believe he’s on pace for a career best year

      • c9castine - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:52 PM

        bobby ryan has no chance of playing the kind of hockey Dan Bylsma wants to play. which is fast, aggressive, puck controlling, and really quick on the transition. there is a reason why blake wheeler is there but not him. USA is not canada, we don’t put a fantasy team together we put a HOCKEY team together.

        everybody thinks they are some kind of armchair GM or coach but bylsma and sheri know how to put a winning team together. you have absolutely no proof that they don’t and theres plenty that they do.

      • dueman - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:28 PM

        @c9castine – “we don’t put a fantasy team together we put a HOCKEY team together.” – Give me a break…Canada – 8 Gold, 4 Silver, 2 Bronze….USA – 2 Gold, 8 Silver, 1 Bronze. I’m not dissing the US, just your comment! I think Canada does a pretty good job at putting HOCKEY TEAMS together. That said, I think the biggest surprise is that Howard made team over Bishop. Nothing against Howard, but Bishop is playing better.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:02 AM

        Bylsma may want to play that style but he’s going to find that a lot of the European countries will be playing the trap on the big ice, they’re going to sit back in a defensive shell, sucking the life out of the game and waiting for their opponents to make a mistake that they can counter on. The US speed should help them with the dump and chase that they’ll need to employ to break through.

        The Euro game is completely different and it’s going to take patience for the more offensive minded countries (Canada, US, Russia).

  3. sjsharks66 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    I thought Justin Braun would make the cut as well.

  4. dcfan4life - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    Honostly, i dont take issue with the snubs this year. All of them had clear negatives against them or quite frankly there were just better options. I think they did a good job fielding the best possible team this Olympics.

    • jl9830 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:58 PM

      So what’s Kyle Okposo’s negative?

      • dcfan4life - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:36 PM

        I dont mind being corrected if im wrong with some kind of stat here but isn’t Okposo’s defense very suspect? And since he isn’t such an increase as a goal scorer above others selected if any, im willing to bet the other forwards defensive contributions to a team that hasn’t played much together and will play high powered offenses in the Olympics was a big factor.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:59 PM

      Snub might be the most misused word in our language. My dictionary says snub means: rebuff, ignore, or spurn disdainfully. There is a limit on how many players each team can have. So those in charge must make painful choices. Some will be questioned and disagreed with. Were any of the unselected spurned disdainfully? I doubt it. There just isn’t enough room for all who we might think deserve it.
      Coming soon: Movies and those who make them “snubbed” by those who honor them with awards.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Jan 2, 2014 at 12:42 PM

      Not including Saad (30 points, +/- 16, big yet skates well, good hands, good handling the puck, goes to the boards and the net), and including Dustin Brown (13 points, good risk of getting suspended due to his dirty play) was a major mistake.

      Pominville would also have been better than Brown.

      • airejota - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:44 PM

        There is a thing called a fourth-line.

    • dccircuitboy - Jan 4, 2014 at 2:42 AM

      figures that a DC fan spells it as “honostly.”

  5. PhillySN - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    Bobby and Kyle could still possibly make the squad if Callahan and Parise aren’t healed

  6. davidpuddy720 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    Handle may be the biggest snub- how do you leave this guy off the roster Ray Shero? I know- how bout I bring my guys Paul Martin and Brooks Orpik along for the ride

    • c9castine - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:48 PM

      along for the ride? orpik was a big part of the silver medal team and paul martin woulda been there if not for injury, and he’s the best american defenseman in the league not named ryan suter. period.

      martin and orpik are going to be hell to play against. orpik is in your face constantly and is one of the most effective defenseman in the league and paul martin is surgical. he plays the game like Lidstrom (relax I’m not saying he’s as good or anything). excellent stick checker and puck mover. hell quarter back the power play and ill bet they want him to set up ryan suter one times and put Kane on the half wall with JVR and Parise working around the net.

      • lowenni - Jan 1, 2014 at 9:07 PM

        Martin is a very underrated defenseman and would be a great addition to the team, but Orpik is not the same defenceman he once was. His skating ability has decreased and he simply isn’t suited for the larger ice surface. I love him, I think he’s a great defenseman, but to say he’s the US’ best defenseman behind Suter is far and away a stretch especially in the context of the Olympics. McDonagh is a better all around defenseman than Orpik in just about every facet of the game except for hitting, Carlson is turning into a great all around defenseman, along with Fowler and Faulk. Orpik does a great job in the NHL. He wouldn’t be able to make the same contributions on Olympic ice.

    • chanceoffleury - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:33 PM

      Paul Martin deserves it. He is an ideal defenseman for Team USA and has flourished in Bylsma’s system. He had a rough first year, but he hasn’t looked back since. And at the end of the day it may help Team USA having a guy who plays in the coaches system night in and night out and excels at it. He’ll be a strong example for what the rest of the blueline is expected to look like in any given situation. Plus, he watches Crosby, Malkin, Neal, and Kunitz in practice every day. Plays lots of games against Lundqvist, Backstrom, and Ovechkin. Not that any one of those players are ever easy to get one step ahead of, but knowing James Neal or Evgeni Malkin’s next move or where they instinctively like to go to on a powerplay unit could easily turn into the difference between a gold medal and a “close but no cigar” pat on the back that leaves them off the medal stand. As hyped as USA and Canada are, I think Sweden, Russia, and Finland, specifically, aren’t going to go down without a lot of kicking and screaming.

      Orpik, I’ll agree with, has an argument to be made given the international ice surface. His puck handling and skating are not always the first of his skills to be desired. I assume they are pairing Martin with Orpik and hoping to save some time by coming in with ready made chemistry. There won’t be much time for “settling in” and “finding their place” for guys that aren’t used to the coach. So not having to worry about at least one pairing might make the first few games a little easier at the end of the day. Maybe it’s smart, maybe it’s not. If team usa comes home with gold I’ll be far too drunk to care who the heck was “snubbed”. Shero and the rest of the team selection committee will only have to face retributions for their actions if it doesn’t work. Shero very rarely does me wrong as a Pens fan so I’m trying to trust him on this one.

      • dccircuitboy - Jan 4, 2014 at 2:48 AM

        Who the hell cares who he faces in practice everyday. Almost every team in the NHL has superstars. Neal and Kunitz are GARBAGE if Crosby and Malkin aren’t playing. You need to wake up. Everyone in the East plays against their opponents the same number of times. Again, your argument fails. Lastly, if I remember correctly, Martin was a liability in the last few playoffs. I would take Yandle a million times over almost anyone that made the team.

    • bmscalise - Jan 1, 2014 at 10:54 PM

      Can’t say I disagree about Yandle over Orpik (Martin is a lock, as far as I’m concerned, though, for the reasons others stated). I suspect it was Martin that got Orpik the nod – because they play so well together. When you get so little prep time – the opportunity to choose 2 defensemen that have played a hundred games together is a huge bonus.

  7. ryanprzy - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    This group is very balanced and we should see some great chemistry out of them.

  8. 19to77 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:21 PM

    Seriously? Stepan and Callahan make this team but Saad and Ryan don’t? Every Ranger whose name isn’t McDonagh has been awful this year. The Saad and Erik Johnson omissions are confusing to me too. Most of the other names I get, because team-wide defense trumps one-way scoring talent and Byfuglien, Jack Johnson and so on are liabilities in their own end. But Erik Johnson is a solid three-zone D and probably a better call than say, John Carlson or Cam Fowler. What gives?

    • deann61 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:53 PM

      Stepan is a play making center, who had excelled for Team USA internationally in the past. There is no other center who could have made the team over him.
      Callahan less all American players in PP goals last year, is a grinder, excellent defender, blocks shots, character guy, with Huge heart, both should be on this team
      Ryan, who I believe should be on the team, lost out to Oshie and Wheeler, because of skating, speed and D on the larger ice surfaces, same for Okposo
      I like Fowler and Faulk over the Johnson’s, yandle was a surprise

      Looks like a solid team, well balanced, and we need Miller to keep his game going!

    • jl9830 - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:15 PM

      Saad? KYLE OKPOSO!!! What else does this guy have to do? Top 5 in the NHL in EV points (40 in 41 games overall), checks, kills penalties, plays power play, is an alternate capt of his team…it’s a travesty that he’s not on the team.

      • endusersolutions2013 - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:25 PM

        Add Okposo to the list of players would have been better than Dustin Brown – Saad and Pominville. All have more than double the points.

    • lowenni - Jan 1, 2014 at 9:10 PM

      I think Carlson gets the nod over E. Johnson because he’s got more offensive skill, is a bit of a faster skater, and maybe has more of a future on US teams that Johnson does. John Carlson is consistently one of the league’s top shot-blockers, he’s a great three-zone D man and probably the US’s best defenseman behind McDonagh, Martin, and Suter.

    • cofran2004 - Jan 2, 2014 at 8:12 AM

      Cally has actually played very well in the games that he’s played in. The issue is the injuries. I’d prefer Okposo over Stepan, but I understand the decision. Ultimately, as everyone is saying, Stepan has the international experience, and that’s huge on the bigger ice surface.

      It looks to me like a very well-rounded team. But… only time will tell.

  9. pastabelly - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:22 PM

    Krug would have been a nice addition to the power play. Bishop should have made it. Has selection committee actually watched any games this year?

  10. lowenni - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:23 PM

    I like the roster as a whole, but I think Yandle should’ve been in over Orpik or Fowler, and Ben Bishop should’ve been in WITHOUT A DOUBT over Howard.

    • 19to77 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:28 PM

      Yandle can be hit-and-miss in his own zone, but I totally agree on the Bishop-vs-Howard thing. I know the third string may not even see ice time, but come on, give it to the guy whose play is actually earning it. Howard has been weak this year.

      • hawksin5 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:33 PM

        COMPLETELY AGREE. Bishops played his ass of this year. handle is iffy for me, i would have picked him over orpik or fowler, although Fowlers skating ability will be nice on the bigger ice surfaces. bobby ryan is surprising to the though. and i wish Saad got a better look.

  11. muckleflugga - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:31 PM

    goals scored in the nhl are meaningless unless the players offering big production also bring speed

    quick hands and a deft touch around the net work in crowded ice where the game falls to scrambled play in-tight but…

    going to big ice, it’s all about speed, and those who made the american team are not just fasssst, but are quick and shifty and good in close…a lethal team on any ice frankly

    stevie y had better take note…wise to hold his cards for another week as rosters shake-out

    we’re in tough unless brodeur rolls it back ten years or so

  12. jimw81 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:42 PM

    No Bobby Ryan, Kyle Okposo, Keith Yandle, Jack Johnson, Ben Bishop, Cory Schneider and Seth Jones.Brilliant work Poile. explains why nashville is an middle of a pack team in the western conference. Paul Homlgren could of created a better roster than this.

    • c9castine - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:56 PM

      really? his team has been under .500 for two years.

      • jimw81 - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:21 PM

        holmgren wont be stupid enough leave yadle off the team and put a aging paul martin on it.

    • devilsarethebest - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:41 PM

      Paul Holmgren helped create this roster…

    • dccircuitboy - Jan 4, 2014 at 2:53 AM


  13. leeeroooyjeeenkiiins - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:46 PM

    Bishop should have made it over Howard. Obviously you don’t make him starter due to the lack of experience(and Miller obviously earned it with his performance 4 years ago anyways), but it certainly doesn’t hurt to have 2 experienced goalies and 1 who lacks experience but has been playing great hockey. If for some reason Miller isn’t working out, wouldn’t you rather have a guy with a ton of potential to back him up over a guy who’s had a mediocre year and just came off an injury?

    • deann61 - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:57 PM

      Agreed, I don’t like Howard, but if Miller falters, they will go to Quick…he has proven himself in big games

    • endusersolutions2013 - Jan 2, 2014 at 12:45 PM

      Fully agreed. And you need someone who is healthy AND delivering this year, vs two that are struggling and coming off injuries.

  14. rico33rd - Jan 1, 2014 at 5:50 PM

    Big Buff is talented, but anyone that has watched Trouba this year would have seriously considered him. Jets best D man all year and plays like a vet and can do it all. Guaranteed to be on all future teams.

  15. bcisleman - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:01 PM

    Kyle Okposo isn’t just the 2nd leading US scorer. He also is a superb skater and leader and has, as the piece noted, done quite well on the big ice in international play. That’s fine. Gives him a chance to rest up for the big push.

  16. muckleflugga - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:12 PM


    hockey team versus fancy team…bang-on…succinct…

    i was just assembling an eighteen paragraph bloviation saying the same…you stole my thunder…lmao


    i take a knee

  17. bencia823 - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:13 PM

    I’m not saying that I agree with the roster, but people need to remember that the olympic roster is not meant to be an American All Star/All Pro team. Shero is trying to build a team that wins, so player style (sniper, grinder, etc.) has to override talent in certain situations. We won’t know how right or wrong Shero/Poile are for another month

  18. snipedanglecelly13 - Jan 1, 2014 at 6:58 PM

    As a redwings fan Howard is garbage!

  19. rgledz - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:02 PM

    Don’t like the goaltenders much, Okposo not being on the team is a mistake and I would have liked to have seen Leddy on the big sheet.

  20. anthonykornheiser - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:07 PM

    bcislesman, wow, take a breather, on both US articles. You aren’t even American. It’s ok if okposo didnt make it. US fielded a good team. They have been scouting for over a yr already, watching games and showing up at games. it isnt just one guy picking a choosing a roster, its the coaching staff, advanced scouts and others collectively building a team they think will work and will form the best chemistry. IM not arguing if okposo is good or not, he is, but, the team they have assembled is pretty good. Maybe if Tavares was American okposo would be a wise choice, but he most definitely benefits from him because he is an all world talent. Based on a lot of these comments, people need to realize it’s more that goal scoring that can win in this tournament. They need guys to throw the body, block shots, shadow some opposing superstars.

  21. mattymarts17 - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:16 PM

    Combined, Ryan Callahan and Derek Stepan have 14 goals and 24 assists. Kyle Okposo has 15 goals and 25 assists.

    • deann61 - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:35 PM

      What other US center should have made it over Stepan?
      Okposo wasn’t going yo play on the top 3 lines, so he would not have the same value on the 4th line as a Callahan or Brown. I would not have had an issue if he made it over Oshie or Wheeler. However playing with Tavares definitely helps

  22. cameltoews - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    You realize Callahan has been hurt for a lot
    of the season right?

  23. cameltoews - Jan 1, 2014 at 7:37 PM

    And Stepan is a center and okposo is a winger. So maybe you should be mad at Blake wheeler or pacioretti not Stepan.

  24. mydadyourmom - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:31 PM

    Kyle Okposo is playing for the Eskimo Olympic team. Read Burniside’s article, they didn’t even consider him.

    Of all these scrubs only Miller Quick Suter Kane and maybe Backes would have a shot to make the real Olympic team, located in Canada. Hihf.

  25. devilsarethebest - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:44 PM

    Guys, you all need to read Burnside’s article before having a right to comment, some of you spew complete crap. This team was built by many people, Poile, Bylsma, Shero, Burke, Holmgren, Laviolette and a few more. Jones and J. Johnson were removed because of dreams and Howard was taken over SCHNEIDER because of experience. Bishop was even further behind. Okposo and Greene weren’t even given a mention. Oh well, team Russia it is.

    • hazlydose - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:02 AM

      After reading Burnsides article, I got the sense that this team was built not on trying to win, but on trying not to lose. Every decision erred on the conservative side.

      • cofran2004 - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:47 PM

        After I read that very well-done article, I got the same impression. I don’t know if it was a bad idea though… It seems to me that they built the team to be responsible defensively, but fast and skilled so as to counter when the other team makes a mistake. They seem built to give the russians/canadians problems.

        I’m pretty happy with the choices; every forward can score goals in their own way, and every d-man is responsible in his own end. Also, if Miller is starting, this griping about howard making the team will be a moot point.

        Maybe the names aren’t as flashy as the canadian team, but the US team is built to beat them. I like their chances.

  26. phillyphanatic77 - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:54 PM

    Bishop got robbed. I like Jimmy Howard but c’mon, his numbers don’t touch big ben.

  27. devilsarethebest - Jan 1, 2014 at 8:59 PM

    Again, Bishop wasn’t a candidate after last year’s Worlds. The next goalie in line was Schneider and he was taken off due to lack of experience.

  28. hardkor07mn - Jan 1, 2014 at 10:40 PM

    How the hell do you invite Bjugstad over Pominville? Bjugstad is the most overrated player I’ve seen in a long time. Lazy. Lazy. Lazy. I’m a huge gopher fan and we couldn’t get him out of here fast enough.

    • deann61 - Jan 1, 2014 at 11:29 PM

      Strictly an age thing, Bjugstad is10 years younger, and has a brighter international future

  29. pastabelly - Jan 2, 2014 at 5:27 AM

    Yandle and Ryan would have made this team if they played their home games in different cities.

  30. greenmtnboy31 - Jan 2, 2014 at 8:49 AM

    I wonder if the Bruins fans on here will still be crying when Brooks Orpik levels someone during the Olympics or if they’ll finally recognize him for the clean, hard nose player he is.

  31. multiplemiggs - Jan 2, 2014 at 10:38 AM

    This roster is a disgrace at its finest. The fact that Rick DiPietro is not on this team is an embarrassment to all who have watched this sport. I now root for Team Kahzakstan. GO KAHZ GO!

    • cofran2004 - Jan 2, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      Yeah! And where he hell is Ogie Oglethorpe? They could use his toughness!

  32. dwadholm - Jan 2, 2014 at 11:07 AM

    Yet somehow Justin Faulk made the team…

  33. endusersolutions2013 - Jan 2, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    Brandon Saad (30 points, +/- 16, played at least as well as a pure rookie last year) was another omission. Picking Dustin Brown (13 points) over Saad or Pominville (27 points) is “most puzzling”.

    • brockohol - Jan 2, 2014 at 2:32 PM

      Im with you on Brown. I know he plays a great defensive game but 13 pts is pretty weak. Especially for a guy that is on a damn good team with some good offensive players. I thought the excuse for leaving some of the “obvious guys” out was because of the speed factor? Are you saying Brown is really fast, on a really good team, but is on pace for less than 30 pts this season? Hell, Yandle has more points now then Brown will all year. Im assuming he will be on some sort of checking/defensive line only. I cant argue with putting Brown, Backes, ad Kessler on the ice with 30 seconds left to preserve the lead.

      Callahan is also puzzling…he has been hurt all year and is currently hurt…when he has been healthy he has not played well (13 pts, 24 games, -6…that doesnt scream Olympian to me). Are they assuming that he will not only be healthy, but in game condition? And then on top of that also start playing well? Seems like a stretch to me…hard to say that he is a better option than a kid with 18 goals and +10 (Ryan).

      Also puzzled by Faulk. Not that he is a bad player nor do I think he will dress in Sochi…but where does he fit in? I guess Im not that familiar with him but he just seems like an average guy who is minus 7 on the year. How he fits in better than Yandle not matter how you spin it is a mystery to me.

      • cofran2004 - Jan 2, 2014 at 5:17 PM

        Ryan skates lazily and is extremely one dimensional. Sure he can score goals, but they have pure goal scorer covered. They’re looking for defensively responsible 2-way players that can still score for the bottom two lines. Did you read the burnside article?? The rangers in general have been awful. NO ONE has been scoring on that team, as they threw a group of 2 way players into an offensively minded coach’s system, and hoped for the best.

        Also, you clearly don’t watch cally play on a regular basis if you think his +/- tells the story about him. Watch him play the PK. You need penalty killers, and he’s one of the best in the game at it.

        If the team was hurting for scoring depth, and it was down to cally and ryan, I’d say go with ryan. But that is NOT the case. You don’t need a pylon who can’t skate, can’t play defense, and can’t kill penalties just because he can score. If healthy and in game shape (which he should be, he’s coming back this week or next), he’s the better 3rd or 4th line option. I really don’t see how you could possibly debate that.

  34. punksinplay - Jan 7, 2014 at 7:03 PM

    I forgot that Callahan is also injured.

    Callahan is back and played last night.

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