The Anaheim Ducks sent seven players to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf represented Team Canada, Teemu Selanne and Sami Vatanen represented Team Finland, Jonas Hiller represented Team Switzerland, Jacob Silfverberg represented Team Sweden, and Cam Fowler represented Team USA in the Olympics. Five of the Anaheim Ducks’ seven Olympians returned from the games with medals.
To recap, Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry earned gold medals. Jacob Silfverberg earned a silver medal . Teemu Selanne and Sami Vatanen earned bronze medals. It was a successful Olympic campaign for the Ducks’ players in 2014.
However, every four years when the Olympics arrive the debates begin again with questions like whether or not the professional athletes should play in the Olympics. John Tavares of the New York Islanders was injured during the Olympics and will be out of action for the rest of the NHL season. Aside from injuries the debate about momentum arises and I see both sides of the argument.
When players go to the Olympics there is an argument that they keep playing and maintain their skills, which helps them finish the season. There is also the risk of injury. But what about the players that don’t play in the Olympics during the break? Some look at the time as a break for the players to heal from any injuries and get ready for the final stretch of the season. Others argue the players get too rusty and don’t finish out the season well.
So how will this impact the remainder of the Ducks’ season? In looking back to the 2010 Winter Olympics, the Ducks sent seven players that year, who all earned medals. The Anaheim Ducks ended up missing the playoffs that year by a few points.
What does that mean for this current Ducks team? This current Ducks team is in first place in the entire NHL where in 2010 they were fighting for eighth place. With Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf on pace to both score 40+ goals and Teemu Selanne’s renewed energy, the Anaheim Ducks will have plenty of momentum to carry them deep into the playoffs this year.