CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada announced its 66-player roster selected to represent Canada at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, Nov. 5-11 in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John, B.C.
The 66 players will be divided into three teams representing Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red, and Team Canada White when they compete against the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden, and the United States in their quest for a gold medal.
In July, 111 players were invited to the week-long national under-17 development camp, marking the first step in Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence. The players chosen to compete at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge were selected by Brad McEwen (Whitewood, Sask.), Hockey Canada’s head scout, in consultation with U17 POE management group lead Steve Staios (Hamilton, Ont./Hamilton, OHL), along with regional scouts Carl Bouchard (Quebec), Barclay Branch (Ontario), Barclay Parneta (West), Kevin Mitchell (Atlantic), and Darrell Woodley (Ontario).
“There is a strong, talented, and skilled group of players to choose from and we feel the 66 we have selected are a great representation of the depth of Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence,” said McEwen. “These young men have demonstrated an ability to learn, grow, and develop while giving Canada the best chance at bringing home gold on Canadian ice.”
The tournament opens Nov. 5 at the Encana Events Centre in an all-Canadian affair as last year’s silver-medallist, Team Canada Black, takes on Team Canada White at 2:30 p.m. MT (4:30 p.m. ET). The opening day concludes with Sweden facing Russia at North Peace Arena in Fort St. John.
TSN and RDS, the official broadcasters for Hockey Canada, will air one semifinal and the bronze- and gold-medal games; please check local listings for details.
Tickets are now on sale with a number of ticketing options for fans in both venues, including a Team Canada package. Fans can take advantage of the best ticketing option by purchasing the full-tournament package, which includes all 14 games at the Encana Events Centre in Dawson Creek, or all 12 games at the North Peace Arena in Fort St. John.
More than 1,600 NHL draft picks have suited up since the inception of the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in 1986 (previously known as the Quebec Esso Cup), including 13 of the last 16 first-overall draft picks (Ilya Kovalchuk, 2001; Rick Nash, 2002; Marc-André Fleury, 2003; Alexander Ovechkin, 2004; Erik Johnson, 2006, Patrick Kane, 2007; John Tavares, 2009; Taylor Hall, 2010, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, 2011; Nathan MacKinnon, 2013; Aaron Ekblad, 2014; Connor McDavid, 2015 and Auston Matthews, 2016).
For more information on the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, please visit HockeyCanada.ca or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter.