Skip to content

‘Canes captain Staal ‘bitter’ about Canadian Olympic omission

Jan 9, 2014, 7:40 PM EDT

estaalgetty Getty Images

Eric Staal helped Canada win gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, but wasn’t selected to defend it at the ’14 games in Sochi — a decision, he says, that’s left a sour taste in his mouth.

“To be honest, my gut feeling, yeah I’m bitter about it,” Staal told Sportsnet on Thursday. “Being there last time and knowing what it takes to win a gold and feeling like I was a good contributor to the group and someone that brings it when it counts—especially the end—I wanted that opportunity again.”

Staal, 29, has been a pretty loyal soldier to the Canadian national team over the years. In addition the ’10 Olympics, he’s played in three World Championships — including the 2013 tournament, in which he served as team captain (and was taken out at the knee by Sweden/Vancouver defenseman Alex Edler.)

Staal also served on Canada’s “taxi squad” for the 2006 Olympics in Turin.

A left-handed center that moved to wing in Vancouver, Staal was beat out by the likes of Patrick Sharp, Patrick Marleau, Chris Kunitz and Matt Duchene for a spot on this year’s team (Canada’s centers are Sidney Crosby, Jonathan Toews, Patrice Bergeron and John Tavares.)

Staal acknowledged how much talent there was ahead of him on the team, and — given he’s not having a great year (35 points in 42 games, minus-15) and is currently sidelined with a lower-body injury — was realistic about the situation.

“I’m obviously disappointed, but sometimes that’s what life throws at you,” he said. “It’s all about how you respond. That’s the way it goes and I don’t want to make excuses.”

Latest Posts
  1. Andersen shuts out Flames as Ducks stay perfect in playoffs

    May 4, 2015, 1:04 AM EDT

    Calgary Flames v Anaheim Ducks - Game Two Getty Images

    The last team to open the playoffs with at least six straight wins was Pittsburgh in 2008.

  2. Yeo: ‘I don’t know what team played that game tonight, but it wasn’t us’

    May 4, 2015, 12:18 AM EDT

    Mike Yeo AP

    He’ll be looking for the Wild to do better mentally at home.

  3. WATCH LIVE: Tonight’s Stanley Cup Playoff action

    May 3, 2015, 11:42 PM EDT

    Corey Crawford, Charlie Coyle AP

    There are three contests scheduled for Sunday.

  4. Video: Crawford needs to change mask after absorbing slapshot to head

    May 3, 2015, 11:36 PM EDT

    Crawford

    He seemed initially dazed, but stayed in the game.

  5. Video: Toews’ shorthanded shot barely crosses the line

    May 3, 2015, 10:27 PM EDT

    Toews goal

    Devan Dubnyk had some bad luck on this one.

  6. Prust blasts referee Watson after getting tossed from Game 2

    May 3, 2015, 9:58 PM EDT

    Brandon Prust Getty Images

    “He tries to play God. He tries to control the game and he did that tonight.”

  7. Stamkos, power play comes alive as Lightning take 2-0 series lead vs. Habs

    May 3, 2015, 8:52 PM EDT

    Steven Stamkos, Ryan Callahan AP

    The series will now return to Tampa Bay where the Lightning were 32-8-1 in the regular season.

  8. Lightning lose Cedric Paquette to undisclosed injury

    May 3, 2015, 8:19 PM EDT

    Tampa Bay Lightning v Montreal Canadiens - Game Two Getty Images

    This might lead to Jonathan Drouin playing in Game 3.

  9. Video: Stamkos ends goal drought in style

    May 3, 2015, 7:38 PM EDT

    Stamkos goal

    How far can the Lightning go if he gets hot?

  10. Video: Habs’ penalty trouble costs them early lead

    May 3, 2015, 7:14 PM EDT

    Filppula goal

    Valtteri Filppula snuck one by Carey Price.

  11. Report: Highly sought after BU goalie O’Connor in talks with three teams

    May 3, 2015, 7:00 PM EDT

    Matt O'Connor AP

    At one point 14 squads were believed to be interested in his services.

  12. Canadiens forced to adjust as Desharnais has the flu

    May 3, 2015, 6:19 PM EDT

    David Desharnais Getty Images

    It’s the first time he’s out of the lineup since the start of the 2014-15 campaign.

  13. Cooper: Drouin will play at some point in second round

    May 3, 2015, 5:46 PM EDT

    Jonathan Drouin Getty Images

    Exactly when that will be remains to be seen.

  14. Boudreau: Maroon can be a ‘big force’ for Anaheim

    May 3, 2015, 4:15 PM EDT

    Anaheim Ducks v Winnipeg Jets - Game Three Getty Images

    He’s working nicely with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.

  15. Good signs for Calgary: Hudler, Ferland take morning skate

    May 3, 2015, 3:00 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Kings v Calgary Flames Getty Images

    Both were at least some risk of missing Game 2.

  16. Smith-Pelly doesn’t want to ‘jinx’ Habs locking down Stamkos

    May 3, 2015, 1:50 PM EDT

    Steven Stamkos, Alexei Emelin AP

    Still zero goals and just three assists for the star sniper.

  17. Haula gets in Wild mix with Fontaine hurt

    May 3, 2015, 12:46 PM EDT

    Dwight King, Erik Haula AP

    Blackhawks fans probably remember him.

Featured video

Stanley Cup playoff Round 2 preview
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. K. Letang (1514)
  2. N. Beaulieu (1409)
  3. J. Hudler (1370)
  4. M. Zidlicky (1332)
  5. R. Lehner (1330)