Bylsma prepares to face Crosby, Malkin in Olympics

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Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma has been tapped as Team USA’s bench boss for the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The United States won the silver medal in 2010 and this time around they want to do one better. They are in the same pool as Russia and there’s a good chance they’ll need to beat Team Canada too at some point in order to fulfill their goal.

Both contests would pit Bylsma against his best players with the Penguins — Evgeni Malkin (Team Russia) and Sidney Crosby (Canada).

“I’ve coached Sidney and Evgeni a long time now, four-plus years, so I am acutely aware of their strengths as players,” Bylsma said, according to CSN Philly. “… having said that, I’m a little concerned [Crosby] knows me as a coach and knows my strengths and weaknesses and will bring that to the Canadian team.”

Those certainly won’t be the only matchups that will force longtime NHL teammates and their coaches to compete against each other, but it certainly is one of the interesting ones. When the Olympics start, team loyalties will take a backseat to serving their nations.

Related:

USA Hockey confirms Olympic management team