CALGARY, AB – Hockey Canada, in partnership with the Canadian Hockey League, announced on Tuesday the 40 players who have been invited to try out for the National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team at a camp at Calgary’s Father David Bauer Arena from August 2-6, 2008.
Hockey Canada will use the camp to finalize a roster of 22 players who will represent Canada at the 2008 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka tournament, scheduled for August 12-16 in Piestany, Slovakia and Breclav, Czech Republic. Canada has won gold at the tournament three of the past four years.
Al Murray, Hockey Canada’s head scout for the National Men’s Team programs, selected the 40 players in consultation with coaching staff along with numerous CHL and NHL scouts and general managers. Bill Peters (Spokane, WHL) will be Canada’s head coach and will be joined on the bench by assistants Steve Spott (Kitchener, OHL) and André Tourigny (Rouyn-Noranda, QMJHL).
“I expect this to be a competitive camp,” says Murray. “There is a lot of talent at each position in the 1991-born age group. We’re all looking forward to the selection camp.”
Highlighting the 40-player roster are four players – defenceman Ryan Ellis and forwards Matthew Duchene, Taylor Hall and Brayden Schenn – who helped Canada win gold at the 2008 IIHF World Under-18 Championship in Kazan, Russia in April. It was Canada’s first victory at that event since 2003.
National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team Information
• 37 of the players who will be attending the selection camp have Program of Excellence experience
• Four players (Ellis, Duchene, Hall and Schenn) helped Canada win gold at the 2008 IIHF World Under-18 Men’s Championship in Russia in April
• 37 players competed in the 2008 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in London, ON
• Nine players won gold with Team Ontario at the 2008 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge
• 13 players competed at the 2007 Canada Winter Games in Whitehorse, YT
• 3 players will be taking part in Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence for the first time (Eakin, Hamilton and Latta)
NHL Entry Draft breakdown
• 35 players are eligible for the 2009 NHL Entry Draft
• 5 players are eligible for the 2010 NHL Entry Draft
Players will arrive in Calgary on August 1st, with ice sessions beginning on August 2nd. Players selected for the team, along with team staff, will depart Calgary for Europe on August 6th.
The National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team is one of two U18 teams run by Hockey Canada on an annual basis. Canada won gold at the 2008 IIHF World Under-18 Men’s Championship in April. The Under-18 program is the second step of Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence, which also includes the Under-17 regional and provincial programs and the National Junior Team.