Early Monday, the Czech Republic announced their roster for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
While hockey legend Jaromir Jagr was not extended an invite, the Czech Republic national team will feature several players with NHL experience, including two who used to play for the Capitals.
Former Caps forward Martin Erat will captain the Czechs while former Capitals and Hershey Bears stalwart Tomáš Kundrátek was named one of eight defensemen to the team.
Other notables include Michal Jordan, who played 78 games for the Carolina Hurricanes over three NHL seasons, and Roman Cervenka (39 games for the Calgary Flames in 2013).
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During Erat’s decorated national team career, he’s won a bronze medal during the 2006 Torino Olympics. He’s also captured a silver and bronze medal in the World Championship. Erat has scored two goals in 18 Olympic games and nine tallies in 31 career World Championship appearances.
While Erat is one of the better players in Czech and Nashville Predators history, he’s best known in these parts for being the disappointing other player in the lopsided Filip Forsberg trade. To gear up for a deep postseason run, the Caps sent Forsberg to the Predators for Erat (who demanded to be traded) and Michael Latta. The higher-seeded Capitals lost in the first round to the New York Rangers. They would miss the playoffs entirely the next year.
Forsberg, who helped lead the Preds to their franchise’s first Stanley Cup appearance in 2017, has scored 106 career goals in 301 NHL games, which includes two 30-plus goal seasons. After scoring his 7th goal in six career games against the Caps earlier this season, Forsberg equated Erat and Latta’s entire goal production for the Caps.
The Capitals would later deal Erat to the Coyotes in his second season with the team after a second trade request. Erat would play one full season in Arizona before signing in the KHL and later the Czech Extraliga. The 36-year-old Erat is currently under contract with HC Kometa Brno.
Kundrátek, a puck mover with an offensive flair, scored one goal in 30 career games with the Capitals.
He played three seasons in Hershey.
The Czech Republic has won two Olympic hockey medals overall, including gold in Nagano in 1998 and the bronze in 2006.
The Czech Republic’s full roster can be seen here:
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