Team Canada submits 'potentials' list for Olympics
TORONTO -- Pittsburgh Penguins top draft pick Sidney Crosby and fellow rookies Jeff Carter, Michael Richards, Dion Phaneuf and Cam Ward are among the 81 potential players for Canada's men's hockey team at the Turin Olympics in February.
The list, released by Hockey Canada on Tuesday, includes nine goaltenders, 23 defensemen and 49 forwards.
"As a country, we are very lucky to have such a wealth of talented players to select from," Team Canada executive director Wayne Gretzky said in a statement. "As a management and coaching staff, the task of reducing this list to 23 players will be challenging as we strive to defend Olympic Gold in Turin. ... It was [a] question of eliminating as much controversy as we can."
A player has to be on the preliminary list to be eligible for the 23-man roster for the Olympics. The final roster must be submitted before Dec. 22.
Players on the preliminary list also become subject to random dope testing, like any other Olympic hopeful.
Forwards Jason Spezza, Eric Lindros, Paul Kariya and defenseman Bryan McCabe are among the players also named who weren't among the 37 players invited to Team Canada's summer camp, but have had strong starts this season.
"There's so much depth in our country, that's a positive. ... The question now is from those 81 players, putting the right 23 together that will be successful," Gretzky said.
Martin St. Louis
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press