When Taylor Hall is watching the Sochi Olympics, he’ll be dreaming about making a major impact on Team Canada next time - knowing full well, of course, that there might not be a next time. With no guarantee the NHLers will be back for the 2018 Olympics in the hockey hotbed of South Korea, there’s a sinking feeling in the hearts of all of Edmonton’s young stars that they might have missed their last chance. While Oilers Ales Hemsky, Anton Belov and Martin Marincin are going this time, Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Nail Yakupov can only hope they get a chance to be part of the world’s biggest hockey tournament in four years. “The Olympics are such a great stage and to be able to represent your country on that stage with all the other Olympians is such a special thing,” said Hall, after getting official word that he’s been left off the 2014 team. “Knowing that this might be the last time certainly stings a bit. Knowing that this might be the last time there’s going to be (NHL) players at the Olympics is certainly a tough pill to swallow.” Hall, knew he was a long-shot to make the team, woke up to a voice message from Hockey Canada’s Director of Communications informing him he hadn’t. “I had a voice mail from Brad Pascal saying I’ve had a good season so far but they didn’t select me for the team. Obviously not a great phone call, but one that I was kind of expecting.” That Hall didn’t get a sniff even though he’s 12th in scoring among Canadian players in the NHL, third in scoring among left wingers and skates as well as anyone in the league leaves room enough for debate - but it’s not one he’s going to be a part of. “It’s a tough process for them, there are so many great players in Canada. I knew that this was a really steep hill to climb. “I think I’ve played well, but I knew I had to be lights out to make that team. It sucks not making it, especially when you feel you might have had a little bit of a chance, but when you look at the players who aren’t on the team you’re in pretty good company.” The concern about Hall was his complete game, another issue he’s not interested in debating.
Oilers Taylor Hall doesn't make the Canada Olympic hockey cut
Edmonton Sun | Jan 8