When the announcement for the United States Men’s Olympic hockey team was made after the NHL Winter Classic, Chicago Blackhawks fans watched intently, hoping that one or three of their team’s players would make the cut. As it turned out, only one was selected to represent the United States in Sochi, but the identity of that player was of no surprise. For Patrick Kane, this will be his second straight Olympics and his first where he will be expected to deliver.
Back in 2010, Kane was a member of the surprising USA team that took Canada to overtime and very nearly stole the gold medal. Kane was on the ice and took part in the play where Zach Parise tied the game with almost a minute left. The heartbreak of having such a good chance to take home the gold is plenty of motivation for Kane and the rest of Team USA to try and prove the skeptics wrong once again.
For Kane, it will be a chance to show off his skills to another international audience. He recently played over in Switzerland for EHC Biel during the lockout. Kane gained valuable experience playing overseas, not just in the development and maturation of his game, but playing on the larger rinks over in Europe. They have been a thorn in the side of American hockey, but Kane is in prime position to perform on the Sochi ice.
And of course, his previous Olympic experience should come in handy. One cannot discount this experience, because it helps. And this, combined with his current hot streak, should make him one of the most dangerous players on the American roster. As a goalscorer and stick handler, his talents are nearly unrivaled, saved for a few players in the league. But once he gets the puck, he’s always a threat to score.
Kane will be one of the USA’s superstars once the Olympics come around. There is no reason to believe that he won’t deliver once he gets to Sochi. Given how hungry he is for a gold medal, that should be plenty of motivation for him and the rest of Team USA to go out and deliver something American hockey fans have been hoping for for way too long.