Later today, Olympic Hockey drops the puck with six countries in action on Day One in Vancouver. Team USA faces off against Switzerland at 3 ET on USA Network. It'll be our first chance to see how the Jamie Langenbrunner captained American bunch featuring Devil teammate Zach Parise, Buffalo's Ryan Miller, Patrick Kane, Bobby Ryan, Joe Pavelski and Ranger PK duo Ryan Callahan and Chris Drury look. Islander defenseman Mark Streit leads the Swiss along with Jonas Hiller in Ralph Krueger's final swan song as national team coach. Something he's done for 13 years.
Strong host favorite Canada also gets underway against Norway in primetime on CNBC at 7:30 ET. A star studded roster features Devil netminder Martin Brodeur, who'll get the day off due to "playing a lot." Haha...Roberto Luongo gets the first start with MB30 in for Game 2 against the Swiss. While much of the attention will be on the two goalies, it'll be hard not to keep our eyes glued to All-Star talents Sidney Crosby, Rick Nash, Jarome Iginla, Ryan Getzlaf, Mike Richards and Shark trio Dany Heatley, Patrick Marleau and Joe Thornton. Did we mention a D that includes Chris Pronger, Scott Niedermayer along with Norris hopefuls Duncan Keith and Drew Doughty? Scary to say we didn't list everyone which is why Canada has to be the favorite. Especially playing on home soil. Look for them to get strong competition from defending champion Sweden, Russia and Finland. USA, the Czech Republic and Slovakia could fly under the radar.
In the late game, the mighty Russians take on Latvia. Sometimes, the super skilled Rycckuc take lesser opponents lightly. But does anyone seriously see that happening against a roster loaded with high end skill. A look at Russia's five-man units per Bob McKenzie is enough to make you drool in envy:
Does Latvia have any shot? About as much chane as we do with Brooklyn Decker. If anyone wants to see the onslaught, 11:55 ET on CNBC.
Here's a look at the rest of the schedule. We'll take our shot at predictions later.