The San Jose Sharks will have the biggest contingent of players at the upcoming Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
Eight Sharks will take the ice next month when the Games begin. San Jose has four members of Team Canada -- linemates Joe Thornton, Dany Heatley and Patrick Marleau, as well as defenseman Dan Boyle -- In addition, goalies Thomas Griess (Germany) and Evgeni Nabokov (Russia), as well as defenseman Douglas Murray of Sweden and Team USA forward Joe Pavelski are headed to Vancouver.
All 30 NHL teams will be represented at the Winter Games, with representation ranging from the Sharks' high of eight to one member of the New York Islanders -- Swiss defenseman Mark Streit.
The naming of defenseman Brian Rafalski to Team USA following Boston's 2-1 OT win over Philadelphia in the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic Friday gave the Detroit Red Wings a total of seven players headed for Vancouver. Four of them are Swedes -- Nicklas Lidstrom, Henrik Zetterberg, Niklas Kronwall, and Tomas Holmstrom. In addition, Valtteri Filppula was named to Finland's Olympic team, while Pavel Datsyuk will play for Team Russia.
The Vancouver Canucks have seven players on six teams -- led by the Sedin twins, Henrik and Daniel, who will play for Sweden. Other Canucks who will be playing in their home arena include Team USA forward Ryan Kesler, German defenseman Christian Ehrhoff, Canadian goalie Roberto Luongo, Finnish defenseman Sami Salo and Slovak forward Pavol Demitra.
Anaheim also has seven players, including defenseman Scott Niedermayer and linemates Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf (Canada), Finland's Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu, Swiss goaltender Jonas Hiller and Team USA forward Bobby Ryan.
Montreal and Toronto were among six teams with six players. Montreal's Olympians include the Kostitsyn brothers, Andrei and Sergei, of Belarus, plus Slovak goaltender Jaroslav Halak, Czech center Tomas Plekanec and defenseman Andrei Markov of Russia and Yannick Weber of Switzerland. Toronto's selections include two Americans -- center Phil Kessel and defenseman Mike Komisarek -- as well as Czech defenseman Tomas Kaberle, forwards Niklas Hagman of Finland and Mikhail Grabovski of Belarus, as well as Swiss netminder Jonas Gustavsson.
Chicago and Columbus also had six players. The Hawks' contingent included the defense pair of Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook who will play for Team Canada along with center Jonathan Toews. Other Hawks making the Olympics include U.S. forward Patrick Kane and Slovak forwards Marian Hossa and Tomas Kopecky. Columbus' Olympians include Canada's Rick Nash and Swedes Samuel Pahlsson and Fredrik Modin. Nashville's six Oympians include two members of Germany's team -- Marcel Goc and Alexander Sulzer.
Martin Brodeur, the likely starter in goal for Team Canada, was among six New Jersey Devils chosen. The Devils also had three players chosen for Team USA, tying Los Angeles (Dustin Brown, Jonathan Quick and Jack Johnson) for the most of any club.
Alex Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and goalie Semyon Varlamov of Russia were among five Washington Capitals to make the Games; Canada's Sidney Crosby and Russia's Evgeni were among the five Pittsburgh Penguins selected by their nations.