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The Case for Canada: Will Corey Perry Be In Sochi?
*Some players are guaranteed a place on Team Canada. Sidney Crosby, Jonathan Toews, John Tavares, and Duncan Keith will all be playing Olympic hockey in Sochi in February, 2014. But there is a whole league of very capable Canadians looking for a place on the country's next band of heroes...
Perry was right there, winning gold with his Canadian brethren in Vancouver. He also chipped in with some more-than-important goals – including a 2-0 tally against Team USA in that gold medal final – and filled out right wing on the team's most consistent, energetic line, playing with Anaheim teammate Ryan Getzlaf and Dallas's Brenden Morrow.
Since 2010, Perry has won a Hart Trophy, but he has also fallen ill with inconsistency. Many thought he played himself out of Olympic contention in 2012 and 2013, but the kid has re-established himself as a front-runner this season.
Perry has 36 points in 35 games, including 21 goals. One of them looked like this...
It's hard to imagine Canada without Perry, especially with his big-game reputation. The Peterborough product has won a Memorial Cup, a World Junior Championship, a Stanley Cup, and the already-mentioned Vancouver gold.
Perry is one of the most dynamic players in the Western Conference and he certainly skates well enough to cover the marginally wider, longer international ice surface.
If Stamkos is out, Canada might not have an offensive force like Perry, especially in comparison to the Americans (Patrick Kane), Sweden (the Sedins), and Russia (Pavel Datsyuk, Evgeni Malkin, and Alex Ovechkin).
One Sentence For...
Perry can take over a game with one shift and one shot, from almost anywhere in the offensive zone.
One Sentence Against...
He's dynamic, but Canada needs more than just another goal-scorer.
Perry will be a game-time decision, but shouldn't be. He'll be on Canada, and he's played his way onto it, beating out one-time guarantees like Claude Giroux, Taylor Hall, and even his own captain Ryan Getzlaf.