The United States Olympic team was announced on New Year's Day following the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs. While those named to the roster were celebrating their selections, Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle was left to wonder what he could have done differently upon being left behind.
Yandle thought he gave himself a great chance to be selected to the roster with his first-half performance, calling his omission from the team "a tough pill to swallow."
The good news for the Coyotes and fantasy owners of Yandle is that rather than sulk, he used the experience as motivation and has been one of the most productive defensemen in the League since the Olympic break.
Make no mistake, his first half numbers were impressive. He picked up seven goals and 31 points over his first 58 games this season, good for .66 points per game. That would tie him for 11th in the League in points per game among defensemen, had he continued along at that pace.
He was firing 2.78 shots on goal per game and had contributed 22 power-play points.