It’s my favourite team of year. The annual IIHF World Junior Hockey championship begins this boxing day, and leading up to it, I will be posting previews of the top players and teams, starting with the defending champions, Team Canada.
My home and native land will not have returnees such as Connor McDavid, But with the top prospects coming in, like Mitch Marner and Dylan Strome, Canada will be fine, and since Canada has decided to continue in buiding teams through speed and skill, we will be just fine.
Here’s my projected roster:
|Mason Macdonald||Mackenzie Blackwood||Samuel Montembeault|
With the goaltending situation already taken care of, it all took a hit when Barrie Colts goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood getting suspended for 8 games after a slashing incident, meaning he were to miss 2 games in the tournament, Hockey Canada had to add a 3rd goalie in Samuel Montembeault, the Florida Panthers prospect.
|Joe Hicketts||Noah Juulsen|
|Haydn Fleury||Roland McKewon|
|Travis Dermott||Brandon Hickey|
Detroit Red Wings signing Joe Hicketts is the only returnee from last years blueline, and with Providence College Star Jake Walman lost due to injury, Hicketts was my only lock on the back end. Since there weren’t many
right handed defensemen, and the way Noah Juulsen played with Joe Hicketts in the subway series, they’ll be my number one pairing. Eligible for this years draft, Jakob Chychrun is an excellent well-rounded defensmen, where there was no way I could cut him.
|Lawson Crouse||Dylan Strome||Mitch Marner|
|Jake Virtanen||Brayden Point||Travis Konecny|
|Rourke Chartier||Nick Merkley||Julien Gauthier|
|Jayce Hawryluk||John Quennville||Mathew Barzal|
Lawson Crouse and Brayden Point are last of the three returnees from the squad in 2015. Cut from last year, Rourke Chartier and Michael Dal Colle have been on tear ever since, leading both their teams to the Memorial Cup, and are still on fire. Leafs draft pick, Mitch Marner has been dominating the OHL, as well as Dylan Strome.
X Factor: Brayden Point
Point in my opinion is the best offensive player on the team, currently recovering from shoulder injury, if he can put up numbers like he was before the injury, Canada can repeat.