ST. JOHN’S, N.L. – For the 33rd time, Canada’s top Midget teams have gathered, this year in St. John’s, to do battle for the National Midget Championship, beginning Monday, April 18. This year marks just the second time Newfoundland and Labrador has hosted the TELUS Cup, joining St. John’s in 1989, and the first time the tournament has returned to a previous host city.
The host St. John’s Privateers are joined by regional champions Halifax Titans (Atlantic), Lions du Lac St-Louis (Quebec), London Jr. Knights (Central), Vancouver North West Giants (Pacific) and Winnipeg Thrashers (West). The six competing teams will take to the ice at Mile One Centre hoping to earn one of the two berths in Sunday’s nationally-televised gold medal game.
The Privateers are the lone returning team from the 2010 TELUS Cup in Lévis, Que., where they won the bronze medal as the Fog Devils. Lac St-Louis is just one gold medal away from tying Regina and Notre Dame as the only teams to win four national championships, and London is the only team without prior National Midget Championship experience in this year’s field. In all, three of the teams competing in St. John’s have played at the TELUS Cup within the last five years (St. John’s, Vancouver and Winnipeg).
“As a host committee we have worked tirelessly to ensure this year’s TELUS Cup provides that will provides everyone, from players to fans and volunteers, with memories that will last a life time,” said Jack Casey, chair of the 2011 TELUS Cup host committee. “The future of Canadian hockey will be on display in St. John’s, and we cannot wait for the first puck to drop.”
The gold medal game will be held April 24 at 4 p.m. NT and will be shown on TSN/RDS, Hockey Canada’s official broadcasters (check your local listings). All other games at the tournament, including both semifinals and the bronze medal game, will be available through FASTHockey at hockeycanada.fasthockey.com for just $7 per game.
Athletes at the 2011 TELUS Cup will be competing not only for a national championship, but also to raise funds for local minor hockey. Over the course of the 19-game tournament, TELUS will donate $100 for every goal scored, up to $5,000, to the St. John’s Minor Hockey Association. This program will encourage teams to give it their all while giving back to the community.
A number of future NHLers have taken part in the National Midget Championship since its inception in 1979, including many who are currently taking part in the Stanley Cup Playoffs:
Daniel Briere – 1994, Intrepide de Gatineau (PHI)
Sheldon Brookbank – 1998, Saskatoon Contacts (ANA)
Ryane Clowe – 2001, St. John’s Maple Leafs (SJ)
Simon Gagné – 1996, Gouverneurs de Ste-Foy (TB)
Dany Heatley – 1998, Calgary Buffaloes (SJ)
Kristopher Letang – 2003, Gaulois du Collège Antoine-Girouard (PIT)
Torrey Mitchell – 2002, Riverains du Collège Charles-Lemoyne (SJ)
Ted Purcell – 2003, St. John’s Maple Leafs (TB)
Brad Stuart – 1996, Red Deer Optimist Chiefs (DET)
NOTE TO MEDIA: Jason LaRose, Hockey Canada’s coordinator of content services, will be on site in St. John’s and can be reached at 403-703-8791 or HYPERLINK "mailto:email@example.com" firstname.lastname@example.org for any interview requests.
The 2011 TELUS Cup is the third and final event held in Newfoundland and Labrador during the 2010-11 season to help celebrate the 75th anniversary of Hockey Newfoundland and Labrador. Last August, Canada’s National Junior Team held its summer development camp at Mile One Centre, while the top four women’s teams in the world – Canada, Finland, Sweden and the United States – took part in the 2010 4 Nations Cup in St. John’s and Clarenville in early November.
For more information on the 2011 TELUS Cup, visit www.hockeycanada.ca/teluscup, or follow the tournament via social media: