Post by Shane Jenkins
Even though every single nation feels as though they have a chance to win the gold medal at the Sochi Olympics in hockey, most experts believe it will come down to the top three. Russia, Canada and The United States all have the depth and star power to make a deep run in the beginning of February. Most of their players will be taking a break from their fantasy hockey production in the NHL to represent their country. So how do the top three squads stack up against each other?
Host Russia had a disappointing 2010 Olympics in Canada. They will be hoping to reverse their fortunes now that they are getting the play on their home soil. They have perhaps the best individual talent in the world in Alex Ovechkin, but they also have some key players at other positions as well. If they can put up quite a few goals to give their defense a cushion, the home team could pull off the victory.
Defending champion Canada figures to be a very formidable opponent for any team that goes up against them. Not only do they have some of the best fantasy hockey players in the NHL, but they have plenty of depth as well. When you have all starts coming off your bench, you know that your team is deep overall. Just like Russia, they are also stacked with forwards who should be able to score quite often. Their defense is a little stronger, as Roberto Luongo will be asked to man the net in most of the important games.
Finally, the United States put up a valiant effort in 2010 only to come up short against Canada. They are considered to be the 3rd best team coming into the Olympics, but when playing well they can compete with anyone. Their goalie situation is a little bit up in air right now, but it appears as though Ryan Miller and Jonathan Quick will share the duties. They will also need some big play from their best goal scorer Patrick Kane.