Yashin, Zhitnik Named to Russian Olympic Team
The four Islanders headed to Italy in February will have more
company and more familiar opponents, now that Alexei Yashin and Alexei Zhitnik have been named to the Russian Olympic hockey team. Chosen by Russian general manager and former NHL star Pavel Bure, Yashin and Zhitnik will each be playing in their third Olympics. Yashin won a silver medal in 1998 and a bronze in 2002, while Zhitnik picked up a gold medal in 1992 and a silver in 1998.
By being selected, Zhitnik and Yashin join U.S. Olympians Mark Parrish, Jason Blake and Rick DiPietro
, and Slovak winger Miroslav Satan in representing their countries and the Islanders in international play. Rather than holding an All-Star game, from Feb. 13 to Feb. 27 the NHL will go on a winter break, so the league's Olympians can compete in the Winter Olympic Games in Turin, Italy.