WBS Pens player Christian Thomas named to Canadian Olympic team

Canadian men's Olympic hockey team unveiled

Canadian men's Olympic hockey team unveiled

Canada won the gold medal at the past two Olympics, in Vancouver in 2010 and Sochi in 2014.

Klinkhammer will look to become the second Lethbridge player to bring home an Olympic hockey medal, following the footsteps of Billy Gibson in 1952.

And how's this for a thought?

Most players are not household names to Canadians.

Team Canada has won three of the last four men's Olympic hockey tournaments - including the last two. Of the 23, 15 play in Europe. four in the NCAA and three in the American Hockey League.

Ebbett played 224 National Hockey League regular season games with the Anaheim Ducks, Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota Wild, Phoenix Coyotes, Vancouver Canucks and Pittsburgh Penguins, scoring 26 goals and adding 45 assists for 71 National Hockey League points.

A year ago, Canadian forward Wojtek Wolski was in a hospital bed recovering from surgery on a broken neck. However, the league declined to halt play for the Pyeongchang Games, citing insurance and travel costs as well as the fact that it doesn't directly benefit financially from the Games. "Mostly tears of happiness, but I am filled with so many emotions about what I have overcome". I could never had imagined that I would be so lucky one year later. The city helped make me into the player and the man I am today.

"All our players somewhere along the line were told 'no, ' and that they weren't going to get a chance to continue their National Hockey League career, or in some cases even start it", said Desjardins, whose team may just have a strong shot at capturing the attention and love of Canadians who otherwise insist they're not interested in B Level Olympians.

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"I think Canadians are going to get behind this team". The emphasis was on skill at the forward positions, a mobile defence and some size - or The Canadian Way, as Burke put it.

Vey is the only player on the team from Saskatchewan, but head coach Willie Desjardins is from Climax, Sask., and went to the University of Saskatchewan.

"I think all hockey fans are looking at it as a bit of an unknown". They all have great track records playing internationally.

The team was announced by Hockey Canada Thursday morning in Calgary, and there will be some Saskatchewan content on the squad.

"We all who have played this game come from somewhere", Canada CEO Tom Renney told reporters. "It's a man's game. We were more confident (going) with the players that we know than hoping with the players that we didn't know".

The roster includes Vernon's Andrew Ebbett.

After seeing the hand Vegas and the Golden Knights were dealt to start their journey, and how they've responded, is it really that impossible to believe this rag-tag group of Canadians can't be competitive in the 12-team tourney starting February 15?

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