Subban’s role with Team Canada remains a mystery

Canadiens fans have two big questions heading into the Sochi Olympic hockey tournament:

Will Carey Price be the No. 1 goaltender?

How much ice time will P.K. Subban get?

“I don’t even know the answer to that question,” Team Canada coach Mike Babcock told reporters in Sochi after Tuesday’s practice when Subban’s role with the team was brought up. “There was a whole bunch of guys out there today, and I was watching everyone. I wasn’t thinking about, ‘geez, is P.K. going to get in?’”

For the second straight day, Subban skated on what appeared to be the fourth defence pairing with Dan Hamhuis. The other pairings had Duncan Keith with Shea Weber, Marc-Édouard Vlasic with Drew Doughty, and Jay Bouwmeester with Alex Pietrangelo.

“Hockey is such a big sport in our country, and it’s such a big part of our culture, we take it very seriously,” Subban told reporters after the practice. “The best players, I’m sure, will play. But you look at our team, we have so much talent and so many players that are capable of playing, it’s not a knock on anyone out there playing seven minutes a game, or not playing at all.”

Babcock has yet to announce his goaltending rotation, but is expected to have Price and Luongo split the first two games with Canada facing Norway at noon ET on Thursday and Austria at noon ET on Friday. Canada will play its final preliminary-round game at noon ET Sunday against Finland.

Here’s how the lines and defence pairings looked at Tuesday’s practice:

Chris Kunitz – Sidney Crosby – Jeff Carter
Patrick Sharp – Jonathan Toews – Rick Nash
Patrick Marleau – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
Jamie Benn – John Tavares – Patrice Bergeron
Martin St. Louis – Matt Duchene

Duncan Keith – Shea Weber
Jay Bouwmeester – Alex Pietrangelo
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Drew Doughty
P.K. Subban – Dan Hamhuis

On another note, happy birthday to former Hab Chris “Knuckles” Nilan, who turned 56 on Tuesday. Nilan will be a guest on this week’s HI/O Show along with Jack Todd, joining sports editor/host Stu Cowan. The show will be taped Wednesday morning and be available on HI/O around 5 p.m. Wednesday.

If you have a question you would like Nilan or Todd to answer on the show, put it in the comments section with this post or email Cowan at scowan@montrealgazette.com

 

(Photo by Jean Levac/Postmedia News)

Where does Subban fit in with Team Canada? by Sean Fitz-Gerald of Postmedia News

Luongo revels in Olympic atmosphere, by Ed Willes of Postmedia News

Complete Olympic hockey coverage, Postmedia News

Top 10 Olympic performances by Canadiens, Canadiens.com

305 Comments

  1. Doooooomed says:

    Test

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  2. Cal says:

    Price starting to me means the coaches have decided the starting job is his to lose. This game will be important for Price. He will have to maintain focus, especially if he handles the puck. (Lately, that has been an absolute weakness in his game.)
    Roy used the Calder Cup win as a springboard to the Stanley Cup. Perhaps, Price can use these Games to give him the confidence to replicate that feat.

    • Marc10 says:

      I feel bad for Norway. After the clinical beatdown they’re going to undergo at the hands of Team C, they’re going to want to quit hockey all together and return to the tranquility of their majestic forests to cross country ski and be at one with nature.

      I’m kidding. I hate those early round match ups… Here’s hoping the boys start rolling early. Go Carey Go!

    • habs001 says:

      If he brings back about 7 players from Team Canada to the Habs…

  3. Storm Man says:

    Hmmm not sure I like Price starting in game 1

  4. scarboro_habitant says:

    Canada/USA women this morning @ 730. should be a good 1.

  5. Marc10 says:

    Looks like Price starts… and 7D against Norway.

    http://www.985sports.ca/olympique/nouvelles/ce-sera-price…-puis-luongo-299927.html

  6. scarboro_habitant says:

    Carey gets nod for game 1.

  7. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …always enjoy reading Robert Rice’s detailed prospect reports

    …He this week, though, chooses Sven Andrighetto as first-star, in His opinion (and the AHL’s)

    …in the one game I saw Sven play 10 days ago, He was invisible …offensively and defensively …I guess inconsistency should not be surprising for His rookie season

    …and, I see that Magnus Nygren competed in the AHL All-star game this week (winning the hardest shot contest) …someone on the EOTP page explained Magnus was representing His Swedish team, not the Bulldogs …how ??? in the World is that possible ?

    …why ??? and how ??? would/can the Swedish Hockey League send Nygren to play in an AHL all-star game ? …I don’t get it

    …did the Habs make a special request ?

  8. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …amazing what $ 52 billion can buy You nowadayz

  9. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Bolshoi Arena

    …ain’t that a great name for a hockey rink ?


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