Invites were handed out today for Team USA Olympic men’s ice hockey camp later this summer, the 2007-08 Penguins were well represented. Currents Ds Brooks Orpik and Rob Scuderi made the list, as did former teammates D Ryan Whitney and LW Ryan Malone, who could become the first Pittsburgh-born men’s ice hockey player to represent the USA at the Olympics.
Some reaction from Scuderi and Whitney:
Scuderi: “It’s a great opportunity, especially for somebody like myself that doesn’t really stick out or stand out. To be considered with some of the players they had on that list is great for me. I was hoping I’d be on Team USA’s radar. I really didn’t think I’d be invited to the camp, but I thought if I had good first half (next season) I could make a case for myself.
“It’s the Olympics, and they look for guys that know how to win and guys that can get along with one another. To that end Brooks, me, Whit and ‘Bugsy’ will be well-served. We went through growing pains together in Pittsburgh, but that made all of us the players we are now.”
Malone: “I wasn’t expecting it, even though I’ve played for the US at the World Championships. If you look at the guys to represent the US that came before us it’s a real honor. Bill Guerin, Keith Tkachuck, John LeClair – these are guys I’ve looked up to. I knew (1980 Team USA coach) Herb Brooks pretty well, and he always talked about the important things for Olympians: Honor and pride in your country. That’s something to think about, for sure.”
“I’m 29, so this might be my last great shot to make the Olympic team. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime thing for me, probably, and I want to be a part of the Vancouver Games in 2010. It would be one of those things I can talk to my son about when he’s older. ‘Yeah, dad played in the NHL, but he also was an Olympian.’ That carries some weight.”
A look at the US invite list: Team USA men’s ice hockey news