What were they thinking? That seems to be the question resonating throughout the Delaware Valley today in regards to the captain of the Philadelphia Flyers being snubbed from the Winter Olympics. Word was received yesterday afternoon that Claude Giroux would not have a roster spot for Team Canada next month in Sochi for the games.
The decision to exclude Giroux from the team left many scratching their heads and quite honestly, it’s baffling. If you compare Giroux’s numbers to some of those who made the roster, it makes Team Canada’s scouts look shameful.
For starters, Giroux has scored more goals (13) than Patrice Bergeron (10) and Rick Nash (seven). Given the fact that Nash has only played in 26 games this season, even if you add up his average goals per game, it’s still not better than Giroux’s average.
He has also tallied more assists this season (26) than 10 offensive players on the roster, including Nash (nine) and Steven Stamkos (nine). Stamkos is another guy who’s been hurt most of the season as he’s only played in 17 games. However, if you accumulate his average assists per game, Giroux’s is better.
Did I mention that Giroux also has more total points than six offensive players on the Canadian roster? What about that tremendously long scoring drought he had in the beginning of the season though? How does that play out in all of this?
Well, it took Giroux a dreadful 16 games to score his first goal this season. That means he’s scored 13 goals in in 27 games to give him an average of 0.48 goals a game. If you multiply that average by the 15 games he went scoreless, it comes out to seven more goals. Add that to the 13 he has scored, and that means he would have 20 goals this season. That’s more than nine players on the roster.
The point I’m trying to make is that Team Canada’s scouts and executive members were simply blinded by a bump in the road for Giroux. Personally, it seems as if they focused too much on his struggles at the beginning of the season and didn’t pay close enough attention to the fact that he’s one of the hottest players in the league right now. Giroux finished in fourth for points scored in the month of December (19), behind only his arch nemesis Sidney Crosby (23).
While Team Canada is the favorite to win the tournament again, they missed out on a chance of making their gold medal hopes a little bit more secure.