At The Hockey News, Rory Boylen looks at 10 players who were snubbed by not getting invited to their respective Olympic orientation camps.
10th on the list is Dan Girardi and Boylen says that the surprising thing to him is that Marc Staal was picked over Girardi.
Boylen says that Staal’s injury issues and Girardi’s rise during that time, the two should be in opposite positions. He does say that Staal would also have been a snub had he not been invited.
Staal was invited to the orientation camp for the 2010 Olympics and has represented Canada in under-17 tournaments, under-18 tournaments, two World Juniors and the 2010 World Championships. He has won three Gold Medals with Canada (U-17 and two WJC) and was named the best defenseman at the 2005-06 WJC.
Girardi has never represented Canada at the international level.
Adam Rotter: It seems that prior international experience is a big factor when inviting players to the camp. Corey Crawford is the only member of Canada who hasn’t previously played for Canada but there are big questions with Canada’s goaltending and he just won the Stanley Cup. Girardi, who should have been invited, doesn’t have that experience but he has been excellent the past few seasons, an All-Star, and at times a legitimate Norris contender. Still, Staal, when healthy, is the Rangers top defenseman and if he is healthy next season he will likely have a spot on Team Canada’s final roster.