Skip to content

‘Canes captain Staal ‘bitter’ about Canadian Olympic omission

Jan 9, 2014, 7:40 PM EST

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. Predators’ Neal will miss Saturday with sickness

    Dec 20, 2014, 11:32 AM EST

    Nashville Predators v Carolina Hurricanes Getty Images

    It’s unclear what the specific ailment is.

  2. Sickness and uncertainty prompt Pens to recall Pouliot, Chorney

    Dec 20, 2014, 11:07 AM EST

    pouliot2 Getty Images

    Good luck trying to forecast their lines for Saturday.

  3. Disgruntled Oilers fans take out ad calling for Kevin Lowe’s firing

    Dec 20, 2014, 9:00 AM EST

    Owners And Players Meet To Discuss NHL Lockout Getty Images

    As it turns out, the hockey exec’s name rhymes nicely with “must go.”

  4. Red Wings lose fifth in a row, recall McCollum

    Dec 20, 2014, 12:09 AM EST

    New York Islanders v Detroit Red Wings Getty Images

    They label Jimmy Howard as day-to-day.

  5. Julien chides Bruins’ offense for too many cute plays

    Dec 19, 2014, 11:32 PM EST

    Michael Hutchinson, Milan Lucic AP

    They fell to Winnipeg 2-1 on Friday.

  6. Sens roll over Ducks, who ‘weren’t ready’

    Dec 19, 2014, 10:31 PM EST

    ryanzibanejad Getty Images

    Then again, maybe the Ryan – Zibanejad – Hoffman line was just that good.

  7. Video: Elias shines as Devils end five-game skid

    Dec 19, 2014, 10:01 PM EST

    Detroit Red Wings v New Jersey Devils Getty Images

    A beauty in regulation and in the shootout.

  8. Habs rotate backups by recalling MacDonald, demoting Tokarski

    Dec 19, 2014, 9:51 PM EST

    Dusitn Tokarski AP

    Sven Andrighetto is back up while Eric Tangradi heads to the AHL.

  9. Howard leaves Red Wings game with lower-body injury

    Dec 19, 2014, 8:48 PM EST

    jimmyhoward Getty Images

    They’re playing safe for “precautionary” reasons.

  10. Bryzgalov gets first Ducks start since 2007

    Dec 19, 2014, 7:43 PM EST

    Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Anaheim Ducks 6-2 Getty Images

    It’s been 2,599 days since that last happened.

  11. Stomach flu makes Lightning’s Johnson a surprise scratch

    Dec 19, 2014, 6:47 PM EST

    Carolina Hurricanes v Tampa Bay Lightning Getty Images

    Let’s hope it’s just that type of illness …

  12. Gordie Howe makes ‘amazing’ recovery following stem cell treatment in Mexico

    Dec 19, 2014, 5:00 PM EST

    Gordie Howe Getty Images

    “As a family, we are thrilled that Dad’s quality of life has greatly improved, and his progress has exceeded our greatest expectations.”

  13. Journeyman Stuart inks with Boston’s AHL affiliate

    Dec 19, 2014, 4:10 PM EST

    32-year-old has played in 56 career NHL contests.

Featured video

More than a Stanley Cup hangover?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. S. Crosby (4063)
  2. B. Bishop (3272)
  3. D. Krejci (2541)
  4. C. Crawford (2484)
  5. C. Kunitz (2311)
  1. C. Perry (2097)
  2. O. Palat (2091)
  3. B. Elliott (1963)
  4. T. Oshie (1847)
  5. T. Hall (1599)