- Katie Strang, ESPN.com
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With the opening ceremony for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia kicking off on Friday, here is a list of the Tri-state area men's hockey players who will compete for the United States:
Los Angeles Kings
Dustin Brown (Ithaca, N.Y.) The Los Angeles Kings captain, who won a Stanley Cup Championship in 2012, will be called upon as one of the members of the U.S. team’s leadership group. He is one of four players returning from the 2010 Olympic squad.
New York Rangers
Ryan Callahan (Rochester, N.Y.) The 28-year-old winger and captain of the New York Rangers will make his second Olympic appearance. He was a member of the silver medal-winning squad in Vancouver in 2010.
John Carlson (Colonia, N.J.) One of the youngest members of the U.S. team, Carlson was a member of the U.S. team that won gold in the 2010 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship. The 24-year-old Washington Capitals defenseman scored the overtime game winner to best Canada in the gold-medal game.
Detroit Red Wings
Patrick Kane (Buffalo, N.Y.) One of the Americans’ most dynamic weapons on offense, Kane has already proven he’s a winner. He’s got two Stanley Cup Championships to his name and won the Conn Smythe Trophy last spring for his MVP performance in the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs.
Brooks Orpik (Amherst, N.Y.) The veteran defenseman is one of two blueliners from the Pittsburgh Penguins to compete for the U.S. team in Sochi. He’ll play alongside Paul Martin on a team led by his Penguins coach Dan Bylsma.
Max Pacioretty (New Canaan, Conn.) Pacioretty was far from a lock to earn a roster spot on this year’s squad but an impressive start to the 2013-14 season for the Montreal Canadiens helped his cause. He is second in scoring with 26 goals and 37 points in 49 games for the Habs this season.
St. Louis Blues
Kevin Shattenkirk (New Rochelle, N.Y.) Shattenkirk is expected to be one of the key players on the back end for the U.S. team, and he may be headed for a long stretch of hockey even after the Games are over. His St. Louis Blues squad is battling the Chicago Blackhawks for the top spot in the Central Division.
Toronto Maple Leafs
James van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) The 6-foot-3, 200-pound winger has played alongside offensive dynamo Phil Kessel this season for the Toronto Maple Leafs. The two hope to put that chemistry to good use for the U.S. in Sochi.
Los Angeles Kings
Jonathan Quick (Milford, Conn.) The 2012 Conn Smythe Trophy winner, and brother-in-law to former Islander Matt Moulson, will battle Buffalo Sabres netminder Ryan Miller for the top goaltending position.