As the NHL did in 2010 after the Bruins/Flyers Winter Classic at Fenway Park, the league announced the U.S. men's Olympic team roster for the upcoming Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, after the conclusion of the Winter Classic between Detroit and Toronto.
|photo via bleacherreport.com|
And Bruins young defensemen Torey Krug is not on the roster.
Krug was left off the men's roster, putting an end to the conversation of Krug making his way onto the team, which reached its peak in late November.
Instead, coach Dan Bylsma and GM David Poile decided to go a different way, drafting Ryan Suter (MIN), Ryan McDonagh (NYR), Justin Faulk (CAR), Cam Fowler (ANA), John Carlson (WAS), Kevin Shattenkirk (STL), Brooks Orpik (PIT) and Paul Martin (PIT).
Orpik and Suter are the only returning players from the 2010 roster.
The defensive unit has been overhauled, with youth and skill in mind, yet Krug, who is arguably one of the best young defensemen in the NHL right now, was not chosen.
Justin Faulk has the least amount of NHL experience of the group, with 144 career games played. Krug has played in just 43.
Many thought Krug could give the team a significant boost on the powerplay, as his skills on the man-advantage is well-known. Krug scored three powerplay goals during his breakout performance in the playoffs last year, and has scored four PP goals and registered nine assists so far in the '13-'14 season.
In the end, it looks like Bylsma and Poile wanted to retool the unit with the focus more on the defensive side of things rather than offensive.
For all of Krug's skills in putting the puck in the net, he still has a long way to go towards honing his skills in his own zone. And it would be tough to throw the 22-year-old right into the most competitive hockey competition in the world and ask him to shutdown the top players on the planet.
On the other hand, Krug could have provided an option on the man-advantage that the other defensemen cannot. And with the Olympic sized rinks providing a much larger surface to operate, Krug's skills would have given the team an advantage that no other team in the tournament has.
What do you think? Did the U.S Men's team miss this one? Did Krug deserve a spot over the other young defensemen?