Team Canada announces orientation camp roster

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Forty-seven players — five goalies, 17 defensemen and 25 forwards — have been invited to attend Team Canada’s Olympic orientation camp to be held Aug. 25-28 in Calgary.

“I would like to congratulate the players being invited today to our orientation camp,” said executive director Steven Yzerman in a Hockey Canada release. “This marks an important step for this program, as it is our only opportunity to be together as a group before Sochi.”

Click here for the full camp roster.

Goalies: Corey Crawford, Braden Holtby, Roberto Luongo, Carey Price, Mike Smith

Defensemen: Karl Alzner, Jay Bouwmeester, Dan Boyle, Drew Doughty, Mike Green, Dan Hamhuis, Travis Hamonic, Duncan Keith, Kris Letang, Marc Methot, Dion Phaneuf, Alex Pietrangelo, Brent Seabrook, Marc Staal, PK Subban, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Shea Weber.

Forwards: Patrice Bergeron, Jeff Carter, Logan Couture, Sidney Crosby, Matt Duchene, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Getzlaf, Claude Giroux, Taylor Hall, Chris Kunitz, Andrew Ladd, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Rick Nash, James Neal, Corey Perry, Mike Richards, Patrick Sharp, Eric Staal, Jordan Staal, Martin St. Louis, Steven Stamkos, John Tavares, Joe Thornton, Jonathan Toews,

As always, there are surprise invites and surprise non-invites. (In the former category, Alzner, Hamonic, and Methot may have raised some eyebrows. In the latter, what about Jamie Benn, Jason Spezza, Evander Kane, Cam Ward, Francois Beauchemin, Dan Girardi and Patrick Marleau?)

Also worth noting, of the five goalies on the camp roster, only Luongo was on the 2010 gold medal-winning team; neither Martin Brodeur nor Marc-Andre Fleury were invited.

More information, from the release:

Collectively, the 47 players invited to orientation camp have:

—- appeared in 1,295 games for Team Canada;
—- won 96 gold medals for Canada in international competition;
—- appeared in 21,728 NHL regular season games, 2,369 NHL playoff games and 57 NHL All-Star Games;
—- won 34 Stanley Cups.

Chicago leads all NHL teams with five players invited to camp, followed by Pittsburgh and San Jose with four:

5 – Chicago
4 – Pittsburgh, San Jose
3 – Boston, Los Angeles, Washington
2– Anaheim, Carolina, Edmonton, Montreal, N.Y. Islanders, N.Y. Rangers, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Vancouver
1 – Colorado, Nashville, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Toronto, Winnipeg

Camp averages:
—- Average age (as of Aug. 26, 2013): 27 years, 6 months, 25 days
—- Average height (as of Aug. 26, 2013): 6’1.5”
—- Average weight (as of Aug. 26, 2013): 206 lbs

Related:

Here are Russia’s 35 Olympic hopefuls

Babcock to coach Team Canada in Sochi

NHL, NHLPA taking wait-and-see approach to 2018 Winter Olympics

WATCH LIVE: Canucks vs. Kings from Shanghai, China

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The Vancouver Canucks and L.A. Kings will make history on Thursday.

The two teams will face each other in an exhibition series in China, marking the first time NHL teams will play preseason games in that country. The two-game set gets underway with Thursday’s contest from the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai.

Set your alarms, wake up early (especially if you’re on the west coast!), put on a pot of coffee and catch the game on NBCSN (7:30 a.m. ET) or online with the live stream.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE

Here are some links to check out for today’s game:

NHL hopes to make inroads in China with exhibition games

It was a little on the foggy side for Canucks practice in Shanghai

Canucks-Kings exhibition series in China highlights preseason schedule

NHL preseason games in China are ‘the biggest deal’ for local fans

NHL looks to China to ‘expand the sport’

 

Video: Flames goalie makes incredible behind-the-back glove save

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A save of the year candidate in September? It’s possible.

Jon Gillies of the Calgary Flames made an incredible stop during Wednesday’s exhibition game against the Vancouver Canucks.

The camera angle from directly above the net is the best, as it clearly shows how Gillies appeared to bump the puck back toward the goal line, then suddenly reach back with a no-look, behind-the-back glove save to prevent a Canucks goal and stop play.

That is one incredible save.

Drouin shows ‘commitment’ to community with donation to Montreal hospital

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Jonathan Drouin has yet to play a regular season game for his new team, the Montreal Canadiens.

But after getting traded to the Habs in the summer, Drouin has already made a sizable contribution in the community, donating $500,000 over 10 years to the University of Montreal Hospital Centre and planning to help in the fundraising activities to raise an additional $5 million, according to The Canadian Press.

From Sportsnet:

“I think all of that had some impact on his overall decision making,” Drouin’s agent Allan Walsh told Sportsnet. “One day when he’s retired and 50 years old, that hospital [which will begin serving patients for the first time this coming October] will still be here and he’ll have played a role in its development. That means something to him.

“But I think more than anything else he wants to help people. If he can help people—the hospital is going to be the largest hospital in North America and there’s a tremendous need for it in the city—and if he can use the fact that he plays for the Montreal Canadiens to do that, I wish more players felt that kind of responsibility to their communities.”

As noted in the Sportsnet piece above, Drouin is following in the footsteps of Saku Koivu and P.K. Subban, who made generous donations in the community during their time in Montreal.

The Habs acquired Drouin from the Lightning in June, sending prospect defenseman Mikhail Sergachev to Tampa Bay. They then signed the 22-year-old forward — who was born in nearby Ste-Agathe, Que. — to a six-year, $33 million contract.

It won’t be long before the pressure falls on Drouin’s on-ice ability, especially playing as a potential No. 1 center in Montreal and essentially being a hometown player for the Habs. But without even playing a meaningful game for his new team, he’s already giving back to an important cause in the city.

“And when you look at that, if you make $6 million and you give $50,000 a year, it’s not a big deal and you get tax receipts,” he said, per the Montreal Gazette. “But it’s a commitment, and being involved in the community and doing something for your community I think it’s something that you have to do.”

Lupul apologizes, takes ‘full responsibility’ after calling out Maple Leafs on Instagram

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Joffrey Lupul made headlines earlier this week after appearing to make accusations against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Instagram.

The comments — which have since been deleted but caught on a screen grab — came after the Maple Leafs announced Lupul failed his physical prior to training camp for the second year in a row.

“I’m ready … just awaiting the call,” Lupul wrote in the comments section of the Instagram post, per the screen grab. “haha failed physical? They cheat. Everyone lets them.”

On Wednesday, the 33-year-old forward, who hasn’t played since the 2015-16 season, posted a statement on his verified Twitter account, saying his Instagram comments were an “inappropriate response.”

Here is his entire statement:

What’s also significant is that he stated he will not seek a second medical opinion regarding this failed physical. As previously noted, that option was available to him, although, per reports, the deadline for this was 5 p.m. on Thursday.

Lupul is in the final year of his five-year, $26.25 million contract.