ROCHESTER, NY - Former Sabres captain Brian Gionta may be skating with a different team these days, but he is very familiar with the colors. After 15 NHL seasons, Gio is now focused on one thing, representing his country. "Yeah, absolutely, that's the goal right now. We entertained some offers and nothing that kind of worked with the family" explained the 38 year old after a recent practice with the Rochester Americans.
After failing to reach a contract renewal with the Sabres, the 38 year old had some tough decisions to make. He had offers from other teams, but at the center was always what is best for his family. So right now, he is preparing in his hometown, skating in practices with the Amerks.
Gionta is no stranger to team USA, he has played in 2 world junior championships, 3 world championships and was the team's top goal scorer at the 2006 Turin games. "It's something I feel strongly about, playing for my country and I would love to have that chance again."
So right now he skates through drills with the Americans, preparing to play for the Americans.
He has taken the first step toward the Olympic team, making the 29 man roster for next week's Deutschland Cup. Joining him in Germany will be another former Sabre and WNY native, goaltender Dave Leggio of Williamsville.