Following a four-day selection camp that included a pair of games against a team of U SPORTS all-stars, 25 players have been named to Canada’s National Junior Team for the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship, Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alta.
Three goaltenders, eight defencemen and 14 forwards were selected by Alan Millar (Tottenham, Ont.), director of player personnel, and James Boyd (Midland, Ont./Ottawa, OHL), the U20 lead for the Program of Excellence management group, with support from Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), senior vice-president of national teams. Head coach Dave Cameron (Kinkora, P.E.I./Ottawa, OHL) and assistant coaches Michael Dyck (Lethbridge, Alta./Vancouver, WHL), Louis Robitaille (Montreal, Que./Gatineau, QMJHL) and Dennis Williams (Stratford, Ont./Everett, WHL), as well as goaltending consultant Olivier Michaud (Beloeil, Que./Drummondville, QMJHL), also provided input.
Among the 25 players are three returnees who won a silver medal at the 2021 World Juniors – Dylan Garand (Victoria, B.C./Kamloops, WHL), Kaiden Guhle (Sherwood Park, Alta./Edmonton, WHL) and Cole Perfetti (Whitby, Ont./Manitoba, AHL).
“We are excited to unveil the 25 players who have earned the opportunity to represent Canada at the IIHF World Junior Championship, as we believe this group will give us the best chance to win a gold medal on home ice,” said Millar. “We were impressed with the level of competition at camp, and we knew we were going to have to make difficult decisions when it came time to name a final roster. Our players and staff look forward the opportunity to compete in front of Canadian fans again, and we know this team will embrace the opportunity of wearing the Maple Leaf as we continue to build towards our goal of winning gold.”
Eight players have been released from selection camp and will rejoin their club teams: Zach Dean (Mount Pearl, N.L./Gatineau, QMJHL), William Dufour (Québec, Que./Saint John, QMJHL), Luke Evangelista (Oakville, Ont./London, OHL), Jack Finley (Kelowna, B.C./Spokane, WHL), Vincent Iorio (Coquitlam, B.C./Brandon, WHL), Joshua Roy (Lévis, Que./Sherbrooke, QMJHL), Hendrix Lapierre (Aylmer, Que./Acadie-Bathurst, QMJHL) and Ryan Tverberg (Richmond Hill, Ont./University of Connecticut, HE). Defenceman Daemon Hunt (Brandon, Man./Moose Jaw, WHL) is unable to participate in the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship due to injury.
Canada’s National Junior Team will head to Banff, Alta., for a training camp at the Fenlands Banff Recreation Centre, Dec. 14-19. It will then travel to Red Deer for a pair of pre-tournament games on Dec. 19 and 20 against Switzerland and Sweden, respectively, before moving to Edmonton for its final pre-tournament match-up on Dec. 22 against Russia as part of the Lordco Road to the World Juniors.
The 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship begins on Boxing Day with Canada kicking off its tournament against the Czech Republic. In addition to its opening-night match-up, Canada will also play Austria on Dec. 28, Germany on Dec. 29 and Finland on Dec. 31 to wrap up preliminary-round action. All Team Canada games will be played at 5 p.m. MT/7 p.m. ET