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Hockey player tells dad he made Olympic team (video)

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Bobby Butler has played for 11 hockey teams in nine years.

Ottawa Senators. Binghamton Senators. New Jersey Devils. Albany Devils. Zagreb. Nizhny.

On Monday, the 30-year-old journeyman forward was named to another team — the Olympic team. When the NHL passed on these Olympics, the path opened for players like Butler.

Then came the moment when Butler broke the news to his dad. At a hockey rink, of course.

John Butler coached Marlborough (Mass.) High’s hockey team for 25 years, including five seasons with Bobby on the squad, before retiring in 2011.

“He told me what it would take,” Butler said in August, according to the MetroWest Daily News in Massachusetts. “He gave me the tools.”

In 2005, Marlborough won its first state title with Butler scoring four goals in the championship game at TD Garden (then still known as the Fleet Center). John was reportedly in tears.

”He’s been on the phone ever since the game ended,” Butler said that day, according to the Boston Globe, which reported that he passed up playing at a prep school to suit up for his dad. “He gets five e-mails every 10 minutes from old Panthers. Everyone knows what this means to him.”

Bobby Butler went on to the University of New Hampshire. He was a finalist for the NCAA men’s hockey player of the year award in 2010. He signed a two-year contract with the Ottawa Senators.

He played 92 NHL games those first two full seasons. Then he started to bounce among NHL teams and between the NHL and the AHL.

After three seasons, Butler moved to Sweden’s top league. Then to Russia’s KHL.

He returned to the U.S. this year, reportedly saying he wanted to spend the rest of his career at home with his wife and two sons.

Butler leads the Milwaukee Admirals — a Nashville Predators affiliate — with 13 goals and 25 points this season.

He will soon return to playing overseas, but he relishes this opportunity.

He played for Team USA at the 2013 World Championship, but in February he will do so at the Olympics for the first time.

“What an honor — I’m still a bit surprised, but I’m certainly humbled by making the roster and excited about the opportunity,” Butler said, according to the Worcester (Mass.) Telegram & Gazette. “Just knowing I was on the list for consideration was an honor, but to actually make the final roster is unreal.”

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MORE: U.S. Olympic men’s hockey roster

WATCH LIVE: London Marathon

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Watch the world’s best distance runners chase world records at the London Marathon, live on NBCSN and commercial free on the NBC Sports Gold “Track and Field Pass” for subscribers on Sunday at 3:30 a.m. ET.

NBCSN coverage also streams on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app for subscribers.

WATCH LIVE: London Marathon
NBCSN coverage — STREAM LINK
NBC Sports Gold commercial free — STREAM LINK

Sunday’s race start times (ET)
3:55 – Elite Wheelchair Races
4:00 – World Para Athletics Marathon World Cup ambulant races
4:15 – Elite Women’s Race
5:00 – Elite Men’s Race, Mass Race

The men’s field features arguably the two greatest distance runners of all time — Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge and Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele.

Kipchoge, the Rio Olympic marathon champ, ran the fastest marathon ever recorded — 2:00:25 in Nike’s sub-two-hour attempt last May in non-record-eligible conditions.

Bekele is the second-fastest marathoner in history under legal conditions, having run six seconds shy of Kenyan Dennis Kimetto‘s world record of 2:02:57 from 2014.

In the women’s race, Kenyan Mary Keitany, already the world-record holder in a women’s-only race, looks to take down Brit Paula Radcliffe‘s world record with male pacers set in London 15 years ago. That time is 2:15:25.

Keitany is challenged by Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba, the third-fastest female marathoner in history behind Keitany and Radcliffe.

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MORE: Shalane Flanagan looks to future after last Boston Marathon

Teddy Riner, dominant judoka, to skip 2018, 2019 Worlds

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French judoka Teddy Riner, arguably the world’s most dominant athlete, will reportedly skip the next two world championships before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

French coach Franck Chambily said Riner will compete a light international schedule the next two years ahead of what would be his fourth Olympics, according to Agence France-Presse.

Riner, a 29-year-old, 6-foot-8-inch native of Guadeloupe, is undefeated since 2010 with a reported 144-match winning streak. That includes Olympic titles in 2012 and 2016 and world titles in 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017.

Before the streak, Riner also earned world titles in 2007, 2009 and 2010, plus an Olympic bronze at age 19 in 2008.

He could compete through the 2024 Paris Games.

“When I am invincible, I will stop,” Riner said in 2013, according to The Associated Press.

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