Marty Erat, a two-time Olympian, wanted one last chance to play for the Czech Olympic team.
Marcus Johansson wanted his first crack at the Swedish Olympic team.
The Capitals have lost seven of their last nine games and could be out of a playoff spot by the time they play again Thursday night in TampaBay.
After making him a healthy scratch the past 17 games, the Caps have placed defenseman Alex Urbom on waivers, apparently with the intent of calling up another defenseman from the Hershey Bears.
Alex Ovechkin has shot TV commercials to promote it. He traveled all the way to Olympia, Greece to carry an Olympic torch for it.