Twelve players from the gold medal-winning 1998 Czech Olympic hockey team will defend their title at the Salt Lake City Winter Games, according to the roster announced Friday by the Czech Hockey Federation. However, defenseman Petr Svoboda, who scored the decisive goal against Russia in the title game, and f forward Martin Straka were left off the team because of injuries. Svoboda, who plays for the Toronto Maple Leafs, is suffering from post-concussion syndrome and Straka, of the Pittsburgh Penguins, has a broken leg.
Goaltender Dominik Hasek, whose acrobatics led the Czechs past the U.S., Canada and Russia, will again be in goal. He will be backed up by Roman Cechmanek of the Philadelphia Flyers and Roman Turek of the Calgary Flames.
Russia also announced its roster, a mix that includes 41-year-old Igor Larionov -- who won gold medals with the Soviet Union's "'Big Red Machine'" in 1984 and 1988 -- and 18-year-old Atlanta Thrasher rookie standout Ilya Kovalchuk.
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