CALGARY, AB - The Canadian Hockey Association and the Canadian Hockey League named 36 players to attend Canada's National Junior Team's Selection Camp from December 10-17 at the Beatrice Ice Gardens in North York, ON, the CHA and www.canadianhockey.ca announced Thursday.
Nine players (Bouwmeester, Boyes, Cammalleri, Hamhuis, Harrison, Ott, Popovic, Spezza, Stoll) are returning players, having captured bronze with Canada at the 2001 World Junior Hockey Championship.
The 36 players will compete at the 2002 selection camp with the goal of being chosen on the final roster of 22 that will participate for Canada at the 2002 World Junior Hockey Championship in Czech Republic, December 25-January 4, 2002.
"This is a quality group of individuals that we've assembled this year for the selection camp," said Barry Trapp, Director, Scouting with the Canadian Hockey Association. "We have assembled a great mix of balance, talent, experience and speed which will make the camp very competitive."
Thirty-four of the thirty-six players are from the Canadian Hockey League, Canada's premier junior hockey league.
The selection camp roster breaks down as follows:
13 players from the Western Hockey League
12 from the Ontario Hockey League
9 from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
2 players who are currently playing in the U.S. College ranks.
Any selection camp roster additions must be made prior to the start of the selection camp (December 10, 2001), as per the CHA's National Junior Team policy.
In the 1990's, Canada captured seven gold medals, with a record five gold medals in a row from 1993-1997, and one silver medal in 1999. Canada has won a bronze medal at the last two World Junior Hockey Championships (2000, 2001). Canada also is the only country to medal at the past three World Junior Championships.
Following the summer development camp in August, 2001, Trapp traveled throughout Canada and the United States, scouting and evaluating the top Canadian players under 20 years of age. He was assisted by regional scouts Serge Aubry (East), Jim Cassidy (Central) and Jim Currie (West).
Fifteen of the players previously represented Canada as members of the Canada's National Under 18 team program (Aulin, Bouchard, Boyes, Cammalleri, Eminger, Harrison, Leclaire, McClement, Nash, Paetsch, Popovic, Stoll, Upshall, Weiss, Woywitka). Twenty-seven of the thirty-six players also have been involved in Canada's Under 17 Program.
"The CHL is very proud of its ties to the National Junior Team program," said Dave Branch, President of the Canadian Hockey League. "We're also very proud of the 34 young men from our three leagues that have been invited to attended this year's selection camp, and of the three coaches and four members of the support staff who also are from the Canadian Hockey League."
"As Canadians, we are very fortunate to annually have the difficult task of limiting the list of invites down, as the talent in Canada is very strong," said Bob Nicholson, President of the Canadian Hockey Association. "The players that have been invited are outstanding individuals that will be terrific representatives of Canada."
The selection camp will take place December 10-17th in North York, ON, at the Beatrice Ice Gardens. The players will train and compete under the watchful eyes of Head Coach Stan Butler (Brampton, OHL), assistant coaches Marc Habscheid (Kelowna, WHL) and Mike Kelly (North Bay, OHL), as well as Director of Scouting, Barry Trapp.
Former NHL goaltender Andy Moog will also be on hand at the selection camp to assist the staff in the evaluation and preparation of the goaltenders. The veteran of 18 NHL seasons currently serves as a Goaltending Consultant with the NHL's Vancouver Canucks.
All practices during the selection camp will be open to the public. Canada will play two intrasquad games on
December 11 and 12, and two pre-competition games against the OUA All-Stars, December 13 and 14, with all
games starting at 5:30 pm ET. For tickets to these two pre-competition games or the Red/White games, contact
the Beatrice Ice Gardens at 416-661-5900, ext. 278 or purchase them at the door.
"I am looking forward to the beginning of this camp," said Butler. "The competition will be great at every position and as a coaching staff, we look forward to the challenge of assembling the best possible National Junior Team as we look to bring gold back to Canada."