OAKVILLE, Ont. – The stage is set for the Czech Republic, with 24 players selected to wear the Maple Leaf with Canada’s National Junior Team at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ostrava and Trinec, Czech Republic.
The roster – which includes three goaltenders, seven defencemen and 14 forwards – was chosen following the four-day Sport Chek Selection Camp in Oakville, Ont., that included a pair of exhibition games against a team of U SPORTS all-stars.
Among the athletes travelling to the Czech Republic are five returnees from the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championship in Vancouver and Victoria, B.C. (Hayton, Lafrenière, McIsaac, Smith, Veleno) and two players who won a silver medal with Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup (Byfield, Drysdale).
“As with every year, there are difficult decisions to trim down our roster, but ultimately we believe this group will give us our best shot at a gold medal,” said Shawn Bullock, director of men’s national teams with Hockey Canada. “We are excited about working with these players in the Czech Republic, and we are looking forward to an exciting World Juniors.”
Canada’s final 22-player roster does not need to be officially submitted to the International Ice Hockey Federation until Dec. 25.
The puck will officially drop on Boxing Day when Canada takes on the United States at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT, followed by games against Russia, Germany and the Czech Republic to round out preliminary action.
TSN and RDS, the official broadcasters of Hockey Canada, will once again provide wall-to-wall game coverage and analysis throughout the tournament, including Canada’s two pre-tournament games against Switzerland on Dec. 19 and Finland on Dec. 23; check local listings for details.
For more information on Canada’s National Junior Team, please visit HockeyCanada.ca or follow through social media on Facebook, Twitter and #WorldJuniors.