Monday, January 11, 2010

Langenbrunner named captain of Team USA, Parise one of four A's on the team

In an announcement that had basically leaked out a few days ago, current Devils captain Jamie Langenbrunner was named the C for Team USA in next month's Vancouver Olympics with fellow linemate Zach Parise serving as one of the four (rotating) A's along with Dustin Brown, Ryan Suter and ex-Devil Brian Rafalski. Really it was little surprise that Langs was named the C given the overall youth on Team USA - only he, Rafalski and the Rangers' Chris Drury have Olympic experience after all. According to USA GM Brian Burke, it wasn't an accident that three of the five leaders are or were Devils:

“A large part of it is that when we were going through the selection process and the captaincy, that kept coming up,” Burke said. “You know, ‘This is a guy that played in the New Jersey system. Brian Rafalski cut his teeth as a Devil. Jamie Langenbrunner has gone through that whole process, watching guys check their ego at the door and do their job. So, yes, a lot of this team selection and captaincy selection is a tribute to Lou Lamoriello, who, of course, has been a giant with USA Hockey. So, no question that’s a factor.”
Of course most hockey fans know about the close relationship between Burke and Lamoriello from their years in college with Burke having played under Lou so it's not really surprising to see the respect he has for the Devils here. Maybe it's fitting in a year that Lou was inducted into the Hall of Fame that Team USA has a lot of his influence on it, including Burke himself.

To go along with the familiar faces, Burke also rewarded the Kings' Brown and Nashville's Suter with A's, fitting since their teams have both done surprisingly well out West. Also each player's uniform number was announced. Langs, Parise and Paul Martin will all get their current numbers as will Drury (23) and Ryan Callahan (24). Buffalo's Ryan Miller might look a little odd in number 39 but only he or the Bruins' Tim Thomas could get 30 and it went to the reigning Vezina winner.

1 comment:

Derek Felix said...

good job with this. interesting choices. i kinda feel for Dru not getting an 'A.' but they balanced it out.

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