No, even Scott Niedermayer didn’t have any input into who would make the final roster for Team Canada.
He was, however, informed earlier, and by higher-up officials, that he would be captaining the Olympic team that will play February in his home province of British Columbia. The Ducks defenseman said Wednesday morning that he had a discussion with head coach Mike Babcock and executive director Steve Yzerman “over the last day” about the team.
Niedermayer did the listening.
“They want to pick a club that they think is going to have a good chance of winning, putting together a team of different style players, guys that do different jobs very well,” he said at Los Angeles International Airport, just before players and coaches boarded a flight for Dallas. “They both know what it does take to win, and they’re going to do a good job of that. There’s going to be some great players having great seasons that aren’t going to get the opportunity, which is unfortunate because there are a lot of good hockey players that come from Canada.”
Niedermayer didn’t know it then, but here’s what the final roster looks like:
Goalies (3): Martin Brodeur, Marc-Andre Fleury, Roberto Luongo
Defensemen (7): Scott Niedermayer (captain), Chris Pronger, Brent Seabrook, Duncan Keith, Shea Weber, Dan Boyle, Drew Doughty
Forwards (13): Sidney Crosby, Jarome Iginla, Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Brenden Morrow, Joe Thornton, Dany Heatley, Patrick Marleau, Patrice Bergeron, Rick Nash, Mike Richards, Jonathan Toews, Eric Staal
Getzlaf and Perry said they were informed of their inclusion by Ken Holland, the Detroit Red Wings’ general manager and Team Canada’s associate executive director, during a brief phone call Wednesday morning.
Iginla, Pronger and Crosby are the alternate captains. Joe Sakic was the captain in Turin, Italy in 2006, when Niedermayer missed the Games due to a knee injury. Thought there was plenty of speculation that Niedermayer would wear the ‘C’ in Vancouver, it wasn’t coming from him.
“Maybe I haven’t thought about it as much as I should have,” he said. “It’s just an honor to be on the team. I guess to be the captain of the club is an honor as well. I’m just going to do the best I can with it. I’m not going to change anything, or do anything drastically different. So I guess in some ways, maybe not make a huge deal about it, just try to be prepared and be at your best when you need to be.”