EDMONTON, AB - You can't have best on best without the best.
Connor McDavid, the NHL's reigning most valuable player and leading scorer, is one of the first three players pencilled in for Team Canada at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
Hockey Canada's general manager for the Olympic team, St. Louis Blues GM Doug Armstrong, announced Friday that McDavid, Pittsburgh Penguins forward Sidney Crosby and Vegas Golden Knights defenceman Alex Pietrangelo are the first three players confirmed, as required by the International Olympic Committee.
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"It goes without saying that Sid is Sid, Connor is Connor, and Alex has got a wealth of experience from the [2014 Sochi Olympics] team to the [World Cup of Hockey 2016] team to the captain of a Stanley Cup champion [St. Louis Blues in 2019]," Armstrong said, according to NHL.com. "Those guys are at the top of their game in the League too, and they're proven winners."
Canada's management and coaching staff held meetings last month in Banff, where the decision was made to list McDavid, Crosby and Pietrangelo. The next task for the group comes with an Oct. 15 deadline as they will have to submit a list of 55 players who will be candidates for the Olympic squad.
McDavid has won a gold medal at the World Under-18 Championship (2013), World Junior Championship (2015) and World Championship (2016), in addition to competing for Team North America at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.