While the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics are still over a year away and the memories of Pyeongchang are still fresh in many fans’ minds (with only one World Championship taking place since then) centralisation for both Canada and the USA is rapidly approaching. Countries historically pick their rosters around late May, beginning of June in the year prior to the Olympics to allow time for players to train, bond and participate in exhibition games before the final roster selection occurring just a month before the big event. What goes on during those 9 months prior to skating out of that Olympic ice surface is largely kept a secret with roster decisions often being announced in a somewhat cut-throat manner and additional players often being drawn in from outside the bubble to the surprise of everyone. Throughout this article, we will be looking at the survival rates of skaters on National Teams over the past 30 years and investigating what this means for roster selection heading into Beijing.
In 2018 between the two teams there were only 3 first time players. Cayla Barnes and Sidney Morin both lined up for the USA on the big stage while Sarah Nurse did the same for Canada. That is of course not to say these players didn’t have prior international experience. Nurse made her national team debut at the 2015 4 Nations Cup and had also represented Canada at a U18 level. Cayla Barnes while just 18 at the time of centralisation had played for the United States 3 times at U18’s including Captaining them to a Gold medal that very year while Morin had previously represented the USA at the 2017 The Time Is Now Tour. While there were only 3 ‘true’ rookies between the two teams that was not to say this was the same line-up as the previous Olympic in Sochi with Team Canada having 8 players missing from their gold medal-winning Sochi side, and the USA missing 7. I have put their names below as we will return to them later.
|Caroline Ouellette||Alex Carpenter|
|Catherine Ward||Anne Schleper|
|Gillian Apps||Josephine Pucci|
|Hayley Wickenheiser||Julie Chu|
|Jayna Hefford||Kelli Stack|
|Jennifer Wakefield||Lyndsey Fry|
|Lauriane Rougeau||Michelle Picard|