Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Team Canada Selection

Chatting with my bloggin' pal over at HHIB about the Team Canada selection process, its kind of an interesting topic for the dead time of the NHL.

Babcock seems determined to build a team around 'roles' and a 'system' -- as opposed to what Quinn would do and just take all the best players, and play his best as much as he could.

My basic opinion is that roles and systems take time to develop and to buy into: time Team Canada might not have. And Babcock would prefer someone who will dance to his tune than a talented upstart. So we'll end up with Dan Cleary instead of Dan Heatly.

Please go drop your 2 cents into the bucket; I'd be interested in what others have to say.

The link, again, is here:


  1. We've seen this before. The Yankees and Rangers have tried getting the best player available at each position, with middling results at best.

    The 1998 Men's team had guys like Shayne Corson and Rob Zamuner, while the 2002 gold medal winners pretty much brought the best players. Following the lead of the '02 team, the 2006 team also brought pretty much the best guys out there. They flamed out spectacularly.

    So what's the answer this time around?

    In my opinion, this is an entirely new group, led by new coaches, new players from a new era.

    I fully trust Yzerman, Babcock, and the rest of the staff to put together the pieces to put a gold medal contending team.

    Anyone who follows me on twitter (@kyleroussel) knows that I think Heatley has forfeited the privelege to play for Canada at the Olympics with his antics. So yeah, in this case I'd take Clearly, but that's more out of spite than with regards to the principle of the argument...

  2. I don't think it matters so much WHO they put on the team so much as WHAT they can do once they hit the ice. If they can work hard as a team then it shouldn't matter too much who they choose. If they can't work as a team then it doesn't matter if we have the best players in the world playing for us.

    I think Babcock should pick the players that he thinks he can work with and he better hope to god that they do everything in their power to (try to) win.

    As for Heatley...his whole attitude with the Sens really damaged his reputation. If I was picking a team for Team Canada, I would seriously be hesitant to pick him even if he's done well at international events. He can Alexander Ovechkin-talented but if he goes off and sulks because he doesn't like Babcock or one of the other coaches, then it's a huge waste and it would just hurt Canada's chances big time.

  3. EP - you touch on an operant point: chemistry. These guys will play roles and systems if the top line scores and the defence play well etc... I suspect things break down when the top players fail to deliver, and other guys, third line guys who are 30 goal scoters, start trying to take over or do too much.

    Sure will be interesting to see if the team can rally behind a leader and get the job done!