On Thursday, USA Hockey announced the 25-player roster that will represent the USA in the men’s Olympic hockey tournament in Beijing next month. Because the NHL will not permit its players to participate at the Olympics this year due to COVID-19 issues impacting the league, rosters are comprised of players from the NCAA, AHL, and international professional leagues.
Among those named to the roster are four players with ties to the Flyers or the Philadelphia area, including forwards Noah Cates, Brian O’Neill, Andy Miele, and goalie Pat Nagle.
Cates, 22, was drafted in the fifth round, 137th overall by the Flyers in 2017. Cates serves as captain at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, where he’s spent the last four seasons. In 20 games this year, Cates has six goals and eight assists. His older brother, Jackson, is a member of the Flyers’ taxi squad and has played five games for the big club this season.
The younger Cates last appeared on the international stage at the 2019 World Junior Championships, where he took silver alongside forward Joel Farabee and Flyers prospects Jay O’Brien and Jack St. Ivany.
O’Neill, 33, was born in Yardley, played for the Philadelphia Jr. Flyers AAA team as a teenager, and graduated from Germantown Academy in 2007. After playing Division I hockey at Yale University, O’Neill spent five seasons in the AHL playing for the Manchester Monarchs (Los Angeles Kings affiliate) and the Albany Devils (New Jersey Devils affiliate) and also played 22 NHL games with the Devils.
For the last five seasons, O’Neill has played in the KHL for Jokerit in Helsinki, Finland. He was a member of the 2018 Olympic men’s hockey team.
Nagle, 34, signed with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms this season and has split time between the AHL and the ECHL with the Reading Royals. Through eight games with the Phantoms, Nagle has posted an .897 save percentage and a 2.74 goals-against average.
Miele, 33, who has 15 NHL games to his name, spent seven seasons in the AHL, including the 2016-17 season with the Phantoms. There, he played 65 games and registered 13 goals and 44 assists. Miele currently plays for Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod of the KHL. This season, he’s scored 13 goals and notched 23 assists in 47 games.
Here’s the complete roster:
Nick Abruzzese (Slate Hill, N.Y./Harvard University), Kenny Agostino (Morristown, N.J./Torpedo/Yale University), Matty Beniers (Hingham, Mass./University of Michigan), Brendan Brisson (Manhattan Beach, Calif./University of Michigan), Noah Cates (Stillwater, Minn./University of Minnesota-Duluth), Sean Farrell (Hopkinton, Mass./Harvard University), Sam Hentges (Fridley, Mass./St. Cloud State University), Matthew Knies (Phoenix, Ariz./University of Minnesota), Marc McLaughlin (North Billerica, Mass./Boston College), Ben Meyers (Delano, Minn./University of Minnesota), Andy Miele (Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich./Torpedo/Miami University, Brian O’Neill (Yardley, Pa./Jokerit/Yale University), Nick Shore (Denver, Colo./Sibir/University of Denver), Nathan Smith (Hudson, Fla./Minnesota State University).
Brian Cooper (Anchorage, Alaska), Brock Faber (Maple Grove, Minn./University of Minnesota), Drew Helleson (Farmington, Minn./Boston College), Steven Kampfer (Jackson, Mich./Ak Bars Kazan/University of Michigan), Aaron Ness (Roseau, Minn./Providence/University of Minnesota), Nick Perbix (Minneapolis, Minn./St. Cloud State University), Jake Sanderson (Whitefish, Mont./University of North Dakota), David Warsofsky (Marshfield, Mass./ERC Ingolstadt/Boston University).
Drew Commesso (Norwell, Mass./Boston University), Strauss Mann (Greenwich, Conn./Skelleftea AIK/University of Michigan), Pat Nagle (Bloomfield Township, Mich./Ferris State University).