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Team USA 2012

With the Summer Olympics underway I am posting mid-term hockey Olympic teams.  Yesterday I posted team Canada and today I will move onto USA.

This is not a projection of who I think will play in 2014 because projections are not so meaningful.  I would rather pick a team based upon what has actually happened than pick a team where I try to project where players will be in two years.  Inevitably if you try to project where players will be, you get things wrong on some players.  Older players may not fall off a cliff and younger players may not develop.  Instead of posting a future team based on fantasy projections this is a team for today.

Here is a US Olympic hockey team for 2012:

Forwards

David Backes St Louis Blues
Dustin Brown Los Angeles Kings
Ryan Callahan New York Rangers
Erik Cole Montreal Canadiens
Patrick Kane Chicago Blackhawks
Ryan Kesler Vancouver Canucks
Phil Kessel Toronto Maple Leafs
Max Pacioretty Montreal Canadiens
Zach Parise Minnesota Wild
Joe Pavelski San Jose Sharks
Jason Pominville Buffalo Sabres
Bobby Ryan Anaheim Ducks
Paul Stastny Colorado Avalanche

Defence

Dustin Byfuglien Winnipeg Jets
Matt Carle Tampa Bay Lightning
John Carlson Washington Capitals
Erik Johnson Colorado Avalanche
Ryan McDonagh New York Rangers
Ryan Suter Minnesota Wild
Keith Yandle Phoenix Coyotes

Goaltenders

Ryan Miller Buffalo Sabres
Jonathan Quick Los Angeles Kings
Tim Thomas Boston Bruins

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Comments

elphantasmo5000's avatar

jack johnson….D
jim howard….G(since thomas is retired currently)
or
cory schneider….G(same reason as why howard)

Posted by elphantasmo5000 on 07/29/12 at 04:06 PM ET

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I think you forgot Jack Johnson on D….

Posted by timbits on 07/29/12 at 04:07 PM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

I remembered not to put Jack Johnson on the team.  His defensive play is a problem. It is no coincidence that after Los Angeles got rid of his giveaways they got their playoff success.

On a team right now I want Tim Thomas as one of my three goaltenders.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 07/29/12 at 04:14 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Jack Johnson being gone isn’t the sole reason the Kings ‘got their playoff success’.

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach on 07/29/12 at 04:25 PM ET

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Not a chance in hell that Thomas ever makes another U.S. team.  No way.  Howard.

Posted by vtheshark on 07/29/12 at 04:25 PM ET

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After his Snubbing of the White House, and his recent comments on Gay marriage; I don’t think Team USA would want anything to do with him. Retired or not. He is a poor representative for his country.

Posted by Mike Ormerod from Edmonton on 07/29/12 at 04:25 PM ET

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I remembered not to put Jack Johnson on the team.  His defensive play is a problem. It is no coincidence that after Los Angeles got rid of his giveaways they got their playoff success.

Looking at Erik Johnson’s stats it seems like his plus minus is a bigger liability than Jack’s. Also Jack is a more dynamic player.

Posted by timbits on 07/29/12 at 04:30 PM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

Jack Johnson being gone isn’t the sole reason the Kings ‘got their playoff success’.

True.  He is one significant reason but hardly the sole reason.

Looking at Erik Johnson’s stats it seems like his plus minus is a bigger liability than Jack’s

Try making a team adjustment.  Consider that until he wound up in Columbus, Jack always played on a better team.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 07/29/12 at 04:34 PM ET

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Try making a team adjustment.  Consider that until he wound up in Columbus, Jack always played on a better team.

Looks like Jack is a plus 5 with Columbus!

Posted by timbits on 07/29/12 at 04:37 PM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

That is likely the effect of a small sample size.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 07/29/12 at 04:45 PM ET

elphantasmo5000's avatar

the kings playoff success is likely the result of a small sample size

Posted by elphantasmo5000 on 07/29/12 at 04:48 PM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

the kings playoff success is likely the result of a small sample size

1.  Are you sure?

2.  Even if that was true, what does it have to do with this team USA?

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 07/29/12 at 04:53 PM ET

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I wholeheartedly agree with PSH’s omission of Jack Johnson. That’s not based on a small sample analysis of the Kings last season, but Johnson’s entire career. He’s terrible. He is a black hole 5-on-5. He makes his teammates worse. The Kings allowed way more shots against, allowed way more goals against, and even scored at a below average rate when Johnson was on the ice.

The man has great physical skills and looks good when he’s skating or shooting a puck. But good Lord is he an awful hockey player.

Don’t believe me? Here’s http://www.battleofcali.com/2011/8/2/2310065/the-jmfj-effect and h,ttp://www.coppernblue.com/2012/2/24/1892938/jack-johnson-is-not-good, and http://hockeyanalysis.com/2012/02/23/just-how-bad-is-jack-johnson/

Also, in regards to the goaltenders, I might slip Howard into the top three, but it would be at the expense of Miller rather than Thomas or Quick.

Posted by Sven22 from Grand Rapids on 07/29/12 at 05:11 PM ET

elphantasmo5000's avatar

1. so we’re using corsi and the kings are 3rd. didnt they have jack johnson most of the year(61 games)? if you are to use it, show me their corsi after those 61 games to show his impact on making their team corsi only 3rd place.

2. your argument against jack johnson was based partly off of the success the kings had with out him. when approached that johnson +5 is possibly the result of a small sample size,  wouldnt that make the kings winning with out jack johnson a small sample size too?

Posted by elphantasmo5000 on 07/29/12 at 05:17 PM ET

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Posted by elphantasmo5000 on 07/29/12 at 03:17 PM ET

In 2011-12, at the time of the Johnson-Carter trade, every single qualified Kings defenseman had a 5-on-5 goals for ratio (on-ice goals for divided by goals against) of at least 51.4 percent ...

... except Johnson, who was at 40 percent.

And this is not a new pattern.

Posted by Sven22 from Grand Rapids on 07/29/12 at 05:25 PM ET

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I’ll pass on Thomas.  Quick would be the go to guy and I’ll take my chances with Miller as the back up.  Give me Howard or Schneider as my depth goalie.  Nothing will ruin a good dinner conversation faster then politics or religion.  My feeling is the same goes for in the locker room.

Posted by Steve on 07/29/12 at 09:10 PM ET

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I don’t expect to see Thomas on the 2012 team due to his age and the fact that he has possibly played his last NHL game, but to hear some people reasoning that he should be left off the team for expressing his opinions is incredibly disturbing.

Posted by henrymalredo from Lansing on 07/29/12 at 10:08 PM ET

shazam88's avatar

Johnson had some clutch, game winning goals early this past year but his tendency to make a horrible clearing move or miss an obvious assignment near the net wore really, really thin.  High quality guy, so I hope he finds the missing pieces to his game and excels in Columbus.

Posted by shazam88 from SoCal on 07/29/12 at 11:24 PM ET

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I think it’s a mistake to not have Orpik. I’d replace either Byfuglien or Yandle with him.

Regarding Johnson, going off of memory, the Kings were a ~55% Corsi tied team after hiring Sutter and before the deadline, and 61% after. Not a huge sample, but they improved a ton without JJ (who is terrific on the power play, but not so helpful otherwise).

Posted by Ralph on 07/30/12 at 02:30 AM ET

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I don’t necessarily disagree with Johnson’s omission. The guy’s got stud D physical skills (moves great, shoots hard, strong as an ox) but just doesn’t get results. What I’m sort of curious about is that Johnson’s deficiencies also apply to Byfuglien, except moreso, yet Buff makes the team. And I don’t want to hear about Byfuglien having better advanced stats, since he skates every single possible shift with a guy who drives those to good places no matter who he’s with (Enstrom) and Johnson doesn’t and never has. Byfuglien is an even bigger disaster of decision-making than Johnson is.

Posted by larry from pitt on 07/30/12 at 05:32 AM ET

LiteWork's avatar

Liles over Johnson and Carle?

Posted by LiteWork on 07/30/12 at 06:53 PM ET

Curley's avatar

Johnson has to be on that team.  He played very well for CBJ when he got there and I watched him carefully in the Worlds and he was very solid on D and ran the US PP masterfully.  A team captain type player and a great glue guy. I don’t agree with your biased assessment. Take a closer look.

Posted by Curley on 07/30/12 at 10:24 PM ET

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Well Thomas would be a fine representative of his country.  He has a first amendment right to say what he wants, that’s as American as it gets.  I’m sure Boston isn’t giving that Cup back because some people disagree with him.

Johnson will prove you knockers wrong this season.  I’ll take him any day.  Jimmy Howard would also be a goaltender pick.

I think I’d have to have Orpik on blue line.  Liles hasn’t played as well in recent seasons.

Posted by 13 user names on 07/30/12 at 10:44 PM ET

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I don’t agree with your biased assessment. Take a closer look.

That’s funny, because an unbiased look says Johnson doesn’t get results at the NHL level. Does he “flip the switch” before going international? Maybe. I wouldn’t bet on it, though. I feel more confident in leaving him off based on hundreds of NHL games as opposed to keeping him on the team thanks to a few dozen international games.

Posted by Ralph on 08/02/12 at 08:26 PM ET

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imageThe Puck Stops Here was founded during the 2004/05 lockout as a place to rant about hockey. The original site contains over 1000 posts, some of which were also published on FoxSports.com.

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