NHL

Sens' Ryan voices displeasure with Olympic selection process

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TSN.ca Staff
1/2/2014 11:59:14 AM
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A lengthy vacation during the NHL's Olympic break next month isn't sitting well with Bobby Ryan.

The Ottawa Senators forward didn't hold back his feelings on Thursday after being left off the U.S. Olympic men's hockey team for the Games in Sochi, calling out director of player personnel Brian Burke and USA Hockey for the way the process was publicized.

"It was kinda gutless," Ryan told a scrum of reporters at the team's morning skate. "I almost feel degraded when it comes out like that. It is what it is - that's their decision and that's how they feel about me."

What made things worse for the young winger was a feature posted Wednesday by ESPN.com's Scott Burnside chronicling a five-month process in which Burke, Team USA GM David Poile and the rest of the selection committee deliberated Ryan's status along with other.

"He's (Ryan) a passive guy," Burke was quoted saying in the feature. "He is not intense. That word is not in his vocabulary. It's never going to be in his vocabulary. He can't spell intense."

But Burke also praised Ryan's ability as a game-breaker, saying that while candidates Max Pacioretty and Brandon Saad were both better 60-minute players, "neither can do what Bobby can do."

The feature added that another selection committee member called Ryan a 'sleepy' skater and when Poile asked his group to raise their hand if they were worried about Ryan, a lot of members did just that.

"They were direct quotes," said Ryan. "It's unfortunate they feel that way. They've got to form a team. I guess to a certain degree you have to respect it. You don't have to agree with it, right? I certainly don't. They could have just cut me."

He added that Burke tried contact him on Wednesday, but Ryan hasn't called back. The 26-year-old has 18 goals and 36 points in 42 games with the Senators this season.

Bobby Ryan (Photo: Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images)

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(Photo: Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images)
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