BOSTON (CBS) – Chris Peters from the CBS Eye On Hockey Blog joined Adam Jones last night to talk about Team USA’s Olympic Hockey chances, and predicted a strong showing from the Americans.
Peters believes the concerns about NHL players on Olympic sized ice are misguided. He argued, “The one thing people talk about is the lack of experience (on the bigger ice), and I think that’s less true than it was in the past. All of these guys have played overseas. All these guys have had success over there.” He cited America’s strong play in World Juniors tournaments, and added that, “Success at a young age will carry over.”
The conversation then shifted to the strengths and weaknesses of the Americans. Peters thinks the team’s best asset is their skating, as he said their greatest strength is, “Above all, the speed. It’s the way they were built, to be a fast team.” He used their young defensive core of competent puck movers as an example, and said, “Their speed is what it all comes down to.”
On the other hand, Peters also cited the youth of the defensemen as the team’s biggest weakness. “They’re a very young blue-line,” he said. “They’ve got a lot of experience at forward. Most of the returnees on this team are up front.”
However, Peters was quick to provide a solution to the problem, suggesting, “You make up for that with (veteran defenseman) Ryan Suter who will probably play a lot of minutes. He’ll be that stopgap, so you won’t have to worry as much about the inexperience.”
Jones and Peters went on to discuss gamesmanship with Coach Bylsma’s practice line-up, Ryan Miller as the potential starting netminder, and snubs from the roster.
You can listen to the entire interview below: