CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada has announced the three Canadian rosters – Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red and Team Canada White – competing at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, Nov. 5-11 in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John, B.C.
With the puck set to drop on the tournament in two weeks, the 66 players on the three teams will face competition from the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden and the United States in their quest for a gold medal.
The players 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).
“This has been a lengthy process from the initial 111 players invited to our summer development camp to narrowing it down to the 66 on our three teams,” said Shawn Bullock, Hockey Canada’s senior manager of hockey operations and men’s national teams. “Our management group and scouting staff have assembled three competitive teams which will wear the Canadian jersey with pride at this prestigious, international competition.”
The tournament officially kicks off 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.
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).