Predators' official added to 2010 U.S. Olympic hockey effort

Monday, June 29, 2009 at 3:20pm

Gerry Helper, the Nashville Predators’ vice president of communications and development, will be part of the communications team for the 2010 United States Olympic Hockey team, USA Hockey announced Monday.

Helper will work with Dave Fischer, USA Hockey’s director of communications, at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and during the upcoming orientation camp, Aug. 17-19 at Chicago.

“Things like the Olympics don’t come around too often,” Helper said. “So I view this as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Predators’ general manager David Poile previously was named associate general manager for the team.

Several Nashville players and prospects, most notably defenseman Ryan Suter, also are candidates for the orientation camp roster, which will be announced Tuesday. Suter has played for the U.S. in four of the past five the World Championships events.

Helper’s only previous connection to the U.S. national team was as a member of USA Hockey’s marketing council from 1994-99.

“In past Olympics, they’ve had one person from an NHL team assist with their communications/p.r. effort,” he said. “I’m thrilled that they asked me to do it.”