WHL sends 12 players to Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp

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Calgary, AB – Hockey Canada announced the names of the 32 players invited to participate in Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp at a press conference this morning, of which 12 currently play in the Western Hockey League.

Mathew Barzal (Coquitlam, BC / Seattle Thunderbirds) returns to camp this year after suiting up for Team Canada one year ago.

The Brandon Wheat Kings, Everett Silvertips, Kelowna Rockets and Regina Pats will each send two players to the selection camp.

WHL Invitees – Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp
Goaltenders H W DOB Hometown WHL Club NHL Draft
Carter Hart 6’2″ 180 8/13/1998 Sherwood Park, AB Everett Silvertips PHI ’16 (2,48)
Connor Ingram 6’1″ 202 3/31/1997 Imperial, SK Kamloops Blazers TB ’16 (3,88)
Jake Bean 6’1″ 170 6/9/1998 Calgary, AB Calgary Hitmen CAR ’16 (1,13
Kale Clague 6’0″ 177 6/5/1998 Lloydminster, AB Brandon Wheat Kings LA ’16 (2,51)
Noah Juulsen 6’2” 185 4/2/1997 Abbotsford, BC Everett Silvertips MTL ’15 (1, 26)
Mathew Barzal 6’0” 187 5/26/1997 Coquitlam, BC Seattle Thunderbirds NYI ’15 (1, 16)
Dillon Dube 5’10” 180 7/20/1998 Cochrane, AB Kelowna Rockets CGY ’16 (2,56)
Brett Howden 6’3″ 190 3/29/1998 Oakbank, MB Moose Jaw Warriors TB ’16 (1,27)
Nick Merkley 5’10” 185 5/23/1997 Calgary, AB Kelowna Rockets ARI ’15 (1, 30)
Nolan Patrick 6’3″ 195 9/19/1998 Winnipeg, MB Brandon Wheat Kings Eligible 2017
Sam Steel 6’0″ 180 2/3/1998 Sherwood Park, AB Regina Pats ANA ’16 (1,30)
Austin Wagner 6’3″ 185 6/23/1997 Calgary, AB Regina Pats LA ’15 (4,99)

Full Selection Camp Roster HERE

In total, Hockey Canada named 19 forwards, 10 defencemen and three goaltenders to its National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp roster, moving one step closer to the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship, which will be hosted by Toronto and Montreal beginning December 26.

Last year, 10 WHL players earned invites to Team Canada’s selection camp, while 14 attended in 2014.

Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp will run from December 10-14 at the Centre d’Excellence Sports Rousseau in Blainville, Que., home of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Blainville-Boisbriand Armada. The selection camp will also include three games: two against the USport All-Stars on December 12 and 13, with one final game against the Czech Republic on December 14.

Following the four-day selection camp, 22 players will be selected to represent Canada and don the Maple Leaf on home ice for the first time since 2015 when Canada won gold in front of a sold-out crowd of over 19,000 fans at the Air Canada Centre. This year, gold will be won in Montreal.

In addition to the 12 WHL players that will attend selection camp, the WHL will be represented on the staff of Team Canada once again this year. Tim Hunter (Moose Jaw Warriors) will serve as an assistant coach while Brian Cheeseman (Edmonton Oil Kings) will serve as an athletic therapist for the second consecutive year for Team Canada.

The selection camp roster was released at a news conference on Tuesday. Ryan Jankowski, director of player personnel for Hockey Canada, and Joel Bouchard, member of the Hockey Canada Program of Excellence manage group, led the evaluation process with input from coaches and general managers across the Canada Hockey League.

“Congratulations to the 32 players named today to the National Junior Team selection camp roster,” said Scott Salmond, vice-president of hockey operations and men’s national teams, Hockey Canada. “With the number of talented players across Canada, it is a difficult process to get to this point. We are confident that the 22 players who emerge from this camp will wear the Team Canada jersey with pride, and give Canada the best opportunity to play for gold on January 5.”

Including Barzal, five players return from Canada’s National Junior Team that competed at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland. In addition to Barzal, Thomas Chabot (QMJHL), Julien Gauthier (QMJHL), Mitchell Stephens (OHL) and Dylan Strome (OHL) return.

“There have been a number of difficult decisions to make just to get us to this point, and I expect these players will continue to impress us and make the next round of decisions tough as well, which speaks to the talent Canada continues to produce on the ice,” Jankowski said. “We’re eager to get the players and our coaching and support staff together and get started.”

Single-game tickets to World Juniors on sale November 30

Fans can purchase single-game tickets to the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship beginning Wednesday, November 30. Single-game tickets for both host venues, as well as other Montreal and Toronto ticket options can be found online at

“As a Team Canada and World Junior Championship alumnus, there’s no experience like being part of a World Junior Championship – whether it’s as a player, or as a fan cheering on your national team,” said Wendel Clark, WHL alumnus and honourary captain of the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship. “This is a special event for hockey fans around the world, but it’s an annual tradition for Canadians – one that we don’t take for granted when it’s here on home ice.”

Canada plays three pre-tournament games as part of the Road to the World Juniors prior to opening the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship in Toronto on Boxing Day against Russia at 8 p.m. ET. It will then face its U.S. rivals on New Year’s Eve at 3:30 p.m. ET to close out preliminary-round action from Toronto before moving to the Bell Centre in Montreal. Extensive coverage of the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship is planned by TSN and RDS, the official broadcasters of Hockey Canada, including Canada’s three pre-tournament games; check local listings for details.

For more information on Hockey Canada, Canada’s National Junior Team, and the 20127 IIHF World Junior Championship, visit or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter, as well as #WorldJuniors.

For more information on the Western Hockey League, visit or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter.

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