By Matt Calamia
Both Rick Nash and Marc Staal were among the 47 players invited to Hockey Canada’s orientation camp for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Nash, 29, has appeared in several international tournaments with Team Canada, including the 2006 and 2010 Olympic Games, where he posted two goals and five assists in seven games en route to a Gold Medal.
In addition to his two Olympic appearances, Nash appeared in the 2002 World Junior Championship tournament where he posted three points in seven games. Nash has also appeared in four World Championship tournaments, where he scored 23 goals and 44 points in 33 games.
Nash is one of just four players invited to the camp who appeared in both the 2006 and 2010 Olympics. In total, Canada has invited 15 members of that Gold Medal-winning squad to this year’s camp.
The Brampton, Ontario-native completed his first season with the Rangers in 2013, registering 21 goals and 42 points in 44 games.
Staal, 26, has yet to make an appearance for Canada in the Olympics, though he has plenty of experience representing Canada on an international level. He captured consecutive Gold Medals at the 2006 and 2007 World Junior Championship tournaments.
Staal also appeared in seven games for Canada in the 2010 World Championship tournament, where he posted one assist and was a plus-2.
Marc isn’t the only Staal invited to camp, as two of his brothers, Eric and Jordan, will be competing for roster spots as well. Eric joins Nash as another invitee to appear in both the 2006 and 2010 games, while Jordan — like Marc — is looking to make his first Olympic appearance.
Staal appeared in just one game after taking a puck to the eye in a game in early March against the Philadelphia Flyers, though he is hopeful the injury will be behind him for the start of next season.
In addition to Nash and Staal, Rangers head athletic trainer Jim Ramsay will be making his fourth Olympic appearance for Canada as the team’s athletic trainer. Ramsay, who has been the Rangers’ head athletic trainer for 19 seasons, held the same position for Canada the past three Games, picking up two Gold Medals in the process in 2002 and 2010.