Pavel Datsyuk became the newest member of hockey’s Triple Gold Club on Sunday when the Olympic Athletes of Russia beat Germany 4-3 to win the Olympic gold medal. The Triple Gold Club is a list of hockey players who have won a Stanley Cup Championship, an IIHF World Championship gold medal and an Olympic gold medal. And with less than 30 members, it is probably the hardest “club” to get into.
Think about it. Players on teams in the Stanley Cup playoffs cannot compete in the World Championships, since they take place at the same time. Sure, a player might win the Cup one year, and then be on a crummy NHL team the next year that misses the playoffs or gets eliminated in the first round, and go on to win a gold medal in the World Championships.
But then there is the added challenge of winning a gold medal in the Olympics, which take place every four years didn’t include current NHLers this time around, and might not in the next one, either.
Thus, being a member of the Triple Gold Cup is just as much about skill — being talented enough to make a team a champion, like Sidney Crosby does — as it is about good timing.
Here is a rundown of every Triple Gold Club member and an explanation of how he got there. Continue reading “A History of the Triple Gold Club”