Gold: Russia (capt. Kovalchuck)
Silver: USA (capt. Chelios)
Bronze: Sweden (capt. Samuelsson)
Seriously, if the NHL pulls out and other leagues (SEL, KHL, etc.) still play, we can pretty much kiss good-bye the hope of ever winning a medal for the US or Canada again.
I think the Russians will dominate.
I doubt that the big names making big money and/or the franchise players will purposely take on contracts that will leave them free agents in Olympic years, but some guys who are borderline players who happen to be free agents might consider playing abroad so that they'd be free to get the chance to play in the Olympics.
If we're watering down the pool, guys like Hudler, who will be 34 in 2018, might leave the NHL early for the chance to play if they've never been chosen before.
I know it will kill my interest in Olympic hockey if I don't know any of the names.
- T.Low likes this