The orientation camp for Canada’s Olympic squad is underway in Calgary.
Jeff Carter, Mike Richards, Simon Gagne and Chris Pronger
are all in attendance, and all have great chances to make the squad for the 2010 games in Vancouver in February. The camp runs until August 27.FlyersTV
“Just to be named to come to a camp like [this], it’s always an honor to be part of it,” said Gagne, who is aiming to play in his third Olympics. “You know you’re part of the top 40 players here in Canada, so just to be here is a plus.
|Although he left camp early due to injury, Simon Gagne is hoping to make the Olympic roster for the third time in his career. (Getty Images) |
“We all know we have a lot of talent here in Canada so you’re going to have to fight for a spot. It’s not because I made the team in 2002 and 2006 that I’m on the team. I’m going to have to have a good camp and a good start to the season to hopefully force [Canada general manager] Steve Yzerman and his team to hopefully pick me.”(NOTE: Gagne suffered an injury on Tuesday, August 25, and will not partake in the remainder of camp).
Carter, who is getting his first taste of an Olympic experience of any kind, is just taking everything in at this point. Although the players are all skating in Calgary and showing their stuff, the real determination of who will make the team will be based mainly on the first half of the NHL season.
The league’s second-leading goal scorer from a year ago lined up as a winger in his first practice.
“I kind of figured I’d be thrown over to the wing, just looking at the roster,” said Carter. “Like [Yzerman] said earlier, guys are going to have to play different positions and play different roles. I’m fine with that. Whatever I’ve got to do.
“You definitely look around the room and sit back and take it all in. But, the first thing you’re here for is to do your job.”
Pronger, who, like Gagne, won gold in 2002 with Team Canada, is impressed with his country’s roster.
“I think the group we have here, there’s a lot of veteran leadership and a lot of young leaders from their respective teams,” he said. “It’s going to be, I think, a very good make-up. It will be like [the 2002 Olympics] in Salt Lake, where there’s pretty much 20 leaders in the room all pulling in the same direction. We’re going to need that in Vancouver.”
The Flyers are one of three teams with four representatives at the camp. The others are Calgary and Chicago.