Latvia’s lengthy long list

53 candidates announced for Olympics

RIGA – After qualifying for the Olympic Winter Games for the third consecutive time, the Latvian Hockey Federation announced its long list with 53 candidates.

The list includes virtually every player that has recently played for the men’s or junior national team. 23 of the 53 players come from the Dinamo Riga organization where they either play in the Russian KHL or for the farm team in the Belarusian league. Six other players come from other teams in Latvia and Belarus.

Six players on the long list are with North American teams whereas defenceman Karlis Skrastins (Dallas) and forwards Martins Karsums (Tampa Bay) and Raitis Ivanans (Los Angeles) had a full NHL season with their teams.

Four players each are under contract in Germany and Russia. Totally, the Latvian hopefuls are spread over 15 different leagues, even though it seems clear that head coach Olegs Znaroks, who also coaches KHL rival MVD Balashikha, might have at least half of the roster full of players from Dinamo Riga or other teams of the Russian league.

Also on the long list is former NHL defender Sandis Ozolins, who will have a comeback at Dinamo Riga after one year without hockey. Ozolins belongs to the 17 players on the long list who already played in the 2006 Olympics in Turin. Ozolins together with Rodrigo Lavins, Aleksandrs Nizivijs, Karlis Skrastins and Atvars Tribuncovs were part of both the 2002 and 2006 Olympic team.

Latvia’s long list

Goalkeepers: Sergejs Naumovs (no club), Edgars Masalskis (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Dmitrijs Zabotinskis (Liepajas Metalurgs, LAT/BLR), Ervins Mustukovs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Nauris Enkuzens (LSPA Riga, LAT), Ugis Avotins (Riga 2000, LET/BLR).

Defencemen: Olegs Sorokins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Georgijs Pujacs (Sibir Novosibirsk, RUS), Kristaps Sotnieks (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Arvids Rekis (Wolfsburg, GER), Krisjanis Redlihs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Aleksandrs Jerofejevs (Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk, RUS), Guntis Galvins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Rodrigo Lavins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Karlis Skrastins (Dallas Stars, NHL), Oskars Bartulis (Adirondack Phantoms, AHL), Jekabs Redlihs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Oskars Cibulskis (Kölner Haie, GER), Janis Andersons (Trinec, CZE), Atvars Tribuncovs (no club), Agris Saviels (Riga 2000, LAT/BLR), Sandis Ozolins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Arturs Kulda (Chicago Wolves, AHL), Kriss Grundmanis (Riga 2000, LAT/BLR), Alberts Ilisko (Nynäshamn, SWE-3), Maksims Sirokovs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL).

Forwards: Lauris Darzins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Herberts Vasiljevs (Krefeld Pinguine, GER), Mikelis Redlihs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Girts Ankipans (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Martins Cipulis (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Juris Stals (Keramin Minsk, BLR), Janis Sprukts (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Aleksejs Sirokovs (Amur Khabarovsk, RUS), Guntis Dzerins (MHC Martin, SVK), Martins Karsums (Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL), Aleksandrs Nizivijs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Viktors Blinovs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Armands Berzins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Kaspars Daugavins (Binghamton Senators, AHL), Andris Dzerins (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Edijs Brahmanis (Crimmitschau, GER-2), Roberts Jekimovs (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Aleksandrs Macijevskis (SønderjyskE Vojens, DEN), Sergejs Pecura (Krylya Sovietov Moscow, RUS-2), Gints Meija (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Toms Hartmanis (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Elviss Zelubovskis (Riga 2000, LAT/BLR), Vladimirs Mamonovs (Liepajas Metalurgs, LAT), Kaspars Saulietis (Dinamo Riga, LAT/KHL), Raitis Ivanans (Los Angeles Kings, NHL), Vladislavs Vodolazskis (Milano Rossoblu, ITA-2), Raimonds Danilics (GBR-2).



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