SASKATOON, Sask. – It was the first time Canada’s National Junior Team won consecutive IIHF World Junior Championships.
On Thursday, Hockey Canada, in partnership with the Canadian Hockey League, honoured Canada’s 19 National Junior Teams, which won back-to-back gold medals in Helsinki, Finland and Saskatoon, Sask., to kick off the 1990s, a decade dominated by Canada at the IIHF World Junior Championship.
Dick Todd, an assistant coach in 1990 and head coach in 1991, Mike Murray (public relations manager for the 1990 team), and Jeff Thomas (trainer with 1991 team) have been joined by 11 players in Saskatoon for a reunion of the two teams. Mike Needham, Dave Chyzowski, Stewart Malgunas and Jason Herter were members of the 1990 team, Scott Thornton, Mike Sillinger, Pat Falloon, Karl Dykhuis and Chris Snell are alumni from the 1991 team and Trevor Kidd and Steven Rice played on both teams.
The staff and players are involved in a press conference in Saskatoon today and will watch the Canada-USA game this evening. On January 1, a New Year’s Day Brunch will be held for fans, which includes an autograph signing with players and staff from the teams. Tickets for the brunch are available at www.ticketmaster.ca.
“Many people talk about the 1991 tournament as the first time Canadians rallied around the IIHF World Junior Championship,” says Bob Nicholson, president and CEO of Hockey Canada. “The two teams in 19 have helped to make this event a tradition for all Canadians at this time of year. It’s only fitting that we honour the players and staff from these two teams.”
All players and staff on the 19 teams have been named members of the Team Canada Alumni Association, which was launched during the 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ottawa. The TCAA has been set up to bring together all Team Canada alumni, including players, coaches and support staff. Members will be able to re-connect with former teammates and friends through a private website.
“It’s great to be back in Saskatoon,” says Todd. “I look forward to swapping memories and stories with some of the players and staff who helped Canada win those two gold medals.”
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