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Hockey Challenge 2014

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World Junior Roster impact

The World Junior Camp invites were announced today for Team Canada and not surprisingly Calvin Pickard has been invited. It would be a complete shock to me if he didn't make the team and I think if Canada knows what is good for them Pickard will be the starter. The competition is stiff though... Olivier Roy is a 19 year old goaltender from Acadie-Bathurst in the Q and he will be the veteran of the invited group. Roy was selected in the 5th round by Edmonton back in 2009. Mark Visentin would appear to be the best competition for Pickard. Visentin was the 2nd goaltender selected in the 2010 draft (behind American Jack Campbell) and before Pickard. Visentin was selected 27th overall by Phoenix. The third invite is JP Anderson. I don't really know much about Anderson, he was undrafted this summer but was then signed by San Jose and he is having a very strong season for Mississauga of the OHL.

My best guess is that Roy will make the team and Picard will need to beat out Visentin for the other spot.

As far as the impact on the Tbirds... the impact might be huge. Pickard will be off to tryout camp from the 10th of December to the 16th and will miss 4 games during that time. If Pickard makes the team and doesn't return before the end of the tournament he will miss 10 games. For those that want to see Michael Salmon, get ready to see a bunch of him.

Also invited to tryout camps were Dave Sutter (Switzerland) and Marcel Noebels (Germany). I'm honestly not very familiar with the teams for either of those countries, so I don't know whether either will make it. My guess is that Noebels probably has a very good chance and Sutter has a decent chance. Camp Germany begins on the 18th. Both Sutter and Noebels will miss between 4-9 games and that will all depend on whether they make their teams and how far they go in the tournament.


stbird said...

I sometimes wonder why this tourney is so important. Most, if not all of these guys have been drafted to the NHL. I know a lot of it has to do with the pride of winning for your country, and I get that. But is it worth a possible 10 games to be missing some of your best players? I just feel that this team needs to make the playoffs to get more experience for next year. The Tri City Americans don't even have one player going to these tryouts, thats a big advantage in my opinon. Wondering your thoughts on the subject.

stoykoj said...

I am sure the Tbirds ownership group feels the same way you do. I fell in love with that tournament last year! I love the passion that they play with, the energy is unmatched.

Thunnex said...

While I do agree that the impact is pretty harmful to a team like Seattle... I think this is one of those situations where we have to keep in mind that these are kids in a developmental league. To Canada, this tournament is one of the biggest events of the year and quite frankly it's pretty big for myself as well.

Watching the Americans win last year was something I will probably never forget.

In a perfect world the league would be able to sync up the winter break with the tournament but that would put the league on break for probably 3 weeks minimum.

It sucks... but I think you have to just consider it a part of the bigger picture of being a Junior Hockey fan.

Anonymous said...

Noebels is a lock for Team Germany. He has already been named to their team. He said they don't have a tryout camp, such as Canada, just pre tournament practice and exhibition games. Sutter must tryout for team Switzerland.

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