It seems that players that have been named to represent their countries at the 2014 Winter Olympics have been going through a stretch where a lot of them have been injured, or announced that they would not be able to go.
The list includes Steven Stamkos, Marian Gaborik, Lubomir Visnovsky, Mikko Koivu, Valtteri Filppula and more. When Ladislav Smid of the Calgary Flames was hurt in today’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers, it looked like another name would be added to that list.
However, according to Wes Gilbertson of the Calgary Sun, the injury is not serious and, in fact, Smid will still travel to Sochi tomorrow and represent the his home country of the Czech Republic.
Despite not playing in third period against Flyers, #Flames D Ladislav Smid (lower-body) is en route to Sochi tomorrow. Injury not serious.
— Wes Gilbertson (@SUNGilbertson) February 8, 2014
In 57 games split between the Flames and the Edmonton Oilers, Smid has scored one goal and added three assists for a total of four points. He is known as a shutdown defenseman and that is what the Czech team at the Olympics will expect out of him.
Smid is not the only Flame to be representing his country at the Olympics. Goaltender Rito Berra is also going. He will more than likely back up Jonas Hiller in net for Switzerland.
The Flames are a team that is struggling a lot this season. The fact that they have two Olympians could be considered surprising. However, the fact that both Smid and Berra are young, it lends credence to the fact that the Flames might be back contending for the playoffs with the right acquisitions and the development of their younger players.