Here is my early look into Team Canada 2010 roster mock up. This is my second and last installment (next to Team USA) on the Olympic roster 2010 mock ups that I will be doing for now. Maybe soon down the road I’ll do one for Russia and Sweden, but for the foreseeable future this is my last blog on this.
Experience, skill, determination and scary are probably the first four words that pop into your head when you see this line. This line is not the fastest line by any means, but it is a line of production and all have Olympic experience.
Dany Heatley who is a goal scoring machine no matter what league or tournament he plays in just broke the all time Team Canada scoring record last spring at the World Championships. He is a must for the top line when playing for his country.
Iginla who is a natural born leader is a lot like Heatley skill wise. Great shot, excellent positioner and knows what it takes to win. He is also probably a shoe in for the top line as well.
Some of you are probably thinking, where is Sidney Crosby on this line? However, I want Vinny on the top for the fact that he has Olympic experience, and he is arguably the most well rounded center the Canadians have right now, plus I would not want to put pressure on Crosby to be on the top line at such a young age (the kid has enough pressure). Things can change, but as of right now I want Vinny on my top line.
My next line has Rick Nash on the left who has a history of playing very good for Team Canada. Jason Spezza is out of his normal center position and he is slotted in at right wing with Sidney Crosby between both of them.
Spezza is a toss up on this line considering some people think he may not even make the 2010 roster (crazy people IMO). Whatever, I think Spezza is one of the best players in the world and will easily make the roster. He can do it all, he has the frame and he has yet to reach his full potential.
I think it’s key to have two big bodies outside of the smaller Crosby for the fact that he will have more room to do what he does. As of right now I don’t see anyone better to put with him than Nash and Spezza if Spezza can adjust to a RW on this line. All 3 should make the final roster.
My 3rd line is probably most similar to my 1st line (minus Getzlaf). I have Getzlaf out of his Center position slotted in at RW. I think Getzlaf is a pure goal scorer in the making with tremendous hands, the type of player who can be a 40 goal scorer in the NHL yearly, and I think having him on a wing where he could prosper more in a goal scorers role would work wonders on this line, plus he is a top notch playmaker as well which does not hurt.
Gagne at the LW is a given and could even be bumped up to line 2. He is one of the premier goal scorers in the world and he should easily make this roster if he avoids injuries. He has past Olympic experience, so he brings that to this line as well.
I wanted Mike Richards centering this line at first, but I felt this line needed more experience so I went with Jumbo Joe Thornton. Joe of course does not have a great history of playing well for his country, especially in big games overall. However, I do believe if Joe is not slotted in at a top 6 role, a lot of pressure will be taken off him and he will do fine.
This is my line of grit, character, leadership, toughness and skill. Guys you can throw out there in any situation at any time of any game.
All three of these players are Captains for their respective teams in the NHL right now (Shane Doan is the new captain Canada), and I personally believe they are 3 of the top 5 captains in the NHL right now.
There isn’t much else that needs to be said about these three. They have a good history going and they are MUSTS to make the 2010 Canadian roster.
I don’t think anyone in their right mind would not have these two as a top pairing (or at least top 4) for Team Canada in 2010, so by default this is automatic. These two are clearly the two best all around D-men Canada is producing right now.
It’s an intimidating top 2 to say the least.
Jay-Bo has been a disappointment as of recently, but you can not deny his fast skating, size and awareness. Many say he is an underachiever, others say he is just plain overrated, but I believe he is a product of the team he plays on in Florida, which is not all that good. Jay still has room for improvement, and he is someone I’d want on my team 8 days a week.
Shea Weber is emerging not only as one of the best Canadian D-man, but one of the best in the world. He has a bulky frame, a booming shot and can hit with the best of them. He’s a lot like Phaneuf, and has not touched his prime yet.
My third pairing couldn’t be more opposite than my top four, but that’s the way it should be. Boyle and Green are a lot alike in the sense that they rely on skating and a half ice game (powerplay) first. These two are world class puck movers and powerplay specialists, and I think they can only compliment each other as a pairing in the sense that they are opposite in stature.
(G) Roberto Luongo
(G) Martin Brodeur
This one probably speaks for itself as well. With the recent injury to Brodeur, we could possibly be seeing the downside of his career from here on out while Luongo is in the midst of his prime. Luongo will definitely make the roster, and Broduer may be a toss up right now, but with all his experience and success in the Olympics he will be there as long as he bounces back from injury and shows he is still an elite netminder.
Extras and players on the outside looking in:
Martin St. Louis
Players on the outside looking out:
*Assuming Sakic and Niedermayer call it quits.