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Old 12-16-2008, 08:17 PM   #142
Obi-Wan Phillips
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Default Kings GM Lombardi added as Scout for Team USA

Team USA
There's been a staff addition of late.

"Because I've shifted to the Eastern Conference, we've added another GM as a scout, [Los Angeles Kings GM] Dean Lombardi," Team USA GM Brian Burke told on Monday.

The Olympic management committee also includes Nashville Predators GM David Poile, Atlanta Thrashers GM Don Waddell, Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren and Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ray Shero.

They've been hard at work.

"We've been rating players since the regular season began, we have our own rating system," said Burke, GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs. "I don't know exactly how many reports we've filed, we're in the hundreds.

"Each guy on the committee has had to do a ghost roster, looking ahead and saying this might be how the team could look like. We've also put together a priority watch list. Every night we see an American player, we file a report. We'll have a pretty comprehensive database by the end of the season, which will help us put our orientation camp together."

Team USA's orientation camp is slated to be held in late August and Burke hopes to have "30 or fewer players" attend.

The management group has already had two full staff meetings. They'll meet again in February, then again at the March GM meetings in Naples, Fla., and again at the June NHL draft in Montreal.

"If you look what we're going to have, there's a good chance we're going to have a real young team," Burke said. "The World Hockey Championships in Halifax [last spring] marked a turning of the page for USA Hockey with respect that it's the first team that we put into international competition without one of those great warriors on it -- those guys that have carried the flag so well for so long."

Burke was referring to the great core of American players who have long been at the forefront of the team, players such as Mike Modano, Keith Tkachuk, Chris Chelios, Doug Weight, etc.

"And we're not saying that this team wouldn't have one of those warriors on it," Burke said. "Tkachuk had a great start and Modano is playing better. We haven't ruled out anybody, but it's clear, looking at the names, that it's going to be a younger team. There's going to be significant turnover."

Zach Parise, Dustin Brown, Phil Kessel, Patrick Kane -- the American team won't have a shortage of young talent.
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