TORONTO, ON - Wayne Gretzky, Executive Director of Canadas 2002 Mens Olympic Hockey team, announced on Saturday the roster that will compete for Canada at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, UT.
Gretzky, along with Assistant Executive Director Kevin Lowe, Head Coach Pat Quinn and the Canadian management and coaching staff announced 15 players on Saturday, which is in addition to the original eight players that Canada named on March 23rd, 2001.
The breakdown of the fifteen players named on Saturday was three goaltenders, four defensemen and eight forwards. The players named to Canada's 2002 Men's Olympic hockey team on Saturday were:
Goaltenders: Ed Belfour (Carman, MB), Martin Brodeur (Montreal, QC), Curtis Joseph (Keswick, ON)
Defensemen: Eric Brewer (Vernon, BC), Adam Foote (Toronto, ON), Ed Jovanovski (Windsor, ON), Al MacInnis (Inverness, NS)
Forwards: Theoren Fleury (Russell, MB), Simon Gagne (Ste-Foy, QC), Jarome Iginla (Edmonton, AB), Eric Lindros (Toronto, ON), Joe Nieuwendyk (Oshawa, ON), Michael Peca (Toronto, ON), Brendan Shanahan (Mimico, ON) and Ryan Smyth (Banff, AB)
The eight players announced on March 23, 2001 by Gretzky were:
Defensemen: Rob Blake (Simcoe, ON), Scott Niedermayer (Cranbrook, BC); forwards: Paul Kariya (Vancouver, BC), Mario Lemieux (Montreal, QC), Owen Nolan (Thorold, ON), Joe Sakic (Burnaby, BC) and Steve Yzerman (Nepean, ON)
"We are extremely excited and proud to name our roster of 23 players that will compete for Canada at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, " said Wayne Gretzky, Executive Director of Team Canada. "We are very fortunate in Canada to have the opportunity to choose from a pool of many great Canadian players, which made the decisions a difficult process. We believe that the group of players we have selected represents one of Canadas greatest international hockey teams, and we look forward to competing this February."
"We have assembled a team with a mix of experience, youth, speed and talent, " said Kevin Lowe, Assistant Executive Director of Team Canada. "The players we have named today for our team will represent Canada proudly."
Canada's first game at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games will be February 15 vs. Sweden at the E-Center in Salt Lake City, UT. Canada has won a gold medal in men's ice hockey six times at the Olympic Games: 1920 Winnipeg Falcons, 1924 Toronto Granites, 1928 University of Toronto Graduates, 1932 The Winnipegs, 1948 Royal Canadian Air Force Flyers and the 1952 Edmonton Mercurys. Canada has also won four silver medals and two bronze medals at the Olympic Games in men's ice hockey.