Former Black Bear goalies Ben Bishop and Jimmy Howard are two of the six finalists to be selected for the USA Olympic team bound for Sochi, Russia in February. In fact, five of the six finalists are former Hockey East players.

Bishop may be considered a surprise late add-on to the list. David Poile is the USA GM for the Sochi team has taken note of Bishop's breakout season with Tampa Bay. The big 6-7 goalie is 14-5-1 with a 2.03 GAA. Bishop played in Orono for three seasons.


Getty Images Jimmy Howard

Jimmy Howard of the Detroit Red Wings is struggling a bit. 6-8-6 record with a 2.70 GAA and he's lost some playing time lately. Howard played three years with the Black Bears.

The other former Hockey East goalies: LA Kings/Jonathan Quick(UMass), NJ Devils/Corey Schneider(Boston College) and Florida Panthers/Tim Thomas(Vermont-ECAC when Thomas played).

Buffalo goalie Ryan Miller is the sixth possible olympian. He played his college hockey at Michigan State.

Here's how the process works. USA olympic officials will continue to evauluate these goalies through December. The roster is announced on Jan 1st at the NHL Winter Classic Game in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Three of the six will go to Sochi to represent the USA.