With NHL players allowed to play in the next two Olympics, which New York Rangers will be going to Beijing and Milan?
The extension of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) still needs to be ratified by the membership, but with that expected to go smoothly it looks like NHL players will be going to the Olympics again. Which New York Rangers are candidates to go?
With the new CBA in effect through the 2025-26 season, that means two Olympics for NHL players. The first is in 2022 in Beijing, China and the second is in 2026 in Milan, Italy. Olympics participation has been one of the issues that was important to the players, while the NHL was opposed to it and the disruption to the season that it would cause every four years.
While the NHL has claimed for years that their opposition was due to the fact that the season would have to halt for weeks, the real reason was that the NHL got very little back from the Olympics. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) consider the Games their monopoly and NHL owners have complained for years that when their players participate, it’s the IOC that benefits and the NHL gets nothing.
Still, it was a valuable bargaining chip for the owners and they used it in this negotiation and as a result, the players will get the chance to represent their countries. The NHL allowed their players to play every Olympics from 1998 to 2014, but withheld that right for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.
The Rangers have been well represented at the Olympics and 13 Blueshirts have won at the Olympics with four gold medals, seven silver medals and two bronze medals
The current New York Rangers are chock full of a United Nations worth of young talent and will be well represented at the next Olympics. Here are the possibilities:
It’s hard to predict a sure thing when it comes to making the 2022 Olympics team, but if Adam Fox continues his progress, there is no way that he won’t be on the team. It could be a teaming of two of this year’s top Calder Trophy candidates with Fox pairing with Vancouver’s Quinn Hughes.
Jacob Trouba could be an outside shot on a loaded Team USA blueline and if Tony DeAngelo keeps improving, he may be a third blueliner on the Olympics squad. Up front, the one player who could make the team is left winger Chris Kreider.
Looking ahead to 2026, add prospects K’Andre Miller and Zac Jones to the list of possibles.
2014: Ryan Callahan, Ryan McDonagh, Derek Stepan
2010 (Silver Medal): Ryan Callahan, Chris Drury
2002 (Silver Medal): Brian Leetch, Mike Richter, Mike York
1998: Pat LaFontaine, Brian Leetch, Mike Richter