Barrie Colts defenseman Aaron Ekblad, expected to be one of the top players picked at the 2014 NHL Draft, is one of 13 players who will skate in both games for Team Ontario Hockey League during the Subway Super Series against Team Russia.
A 6-foot-3, 216-pound defenseman, Ekblad has six goals and seven assists in 14 games, and received an "A" rating from NHL Central Scouting in its preliminary list of players to watch from the OHL. He also is the only player eligible for the 2014 draft that will play in both games, which serve as another step in the evaluation process used by Canada to pick its team for the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.
Two other highly regarded 2014 draft prospects will take part in the games, which will be played Nov. 21 in Oshawa, Ontario, and Nov. 25 in Sudbury, Ontario.
Oshawa Generals forward Michael Dal Colle will play in the Oshawa game. A 6-1.5, 179-pound forward, he leads his team with nine goals and 23 points in 15 games.
Samuel Bennett of the Kingston Frontenacs will skate in the Sudbury game. The 6-0.25, 178-pound left wing leads his team with 10 goals in 14 games, and is second with 22 points.
Besides Ekblad, other players skating in both games are goaltender Matthew Murray; defensemen Chris Bigras, Joshua Brown, Darnell Nurse, Adam Pelech; and forwards Josh Anderson, Connor Brown, Max Domi, Brendan Gaunce, Bo Horvat and Scott Laughton. Also playing both games will be Erie Otters center Connor McDavid, who won't be NHL draft-eligible until 2015.
Oshawa coach D.J. Smith will be behind the bench for Team OHL in the Oshawa game, along with his regular Oshawa assistants Roger Hunt and Paul McFarland. London Knights coach Dale Hunter will coach Team OHL at the Sudbury game, with Sudbury coach Paul Fixter and Sudbury assistant coach David Matsos serving as assistant coaches.
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TEAM OHL ROSTER
*- playing in both games
Defensemen: *Chris Bigras, (Colorado); *Joshua Brown, Oshawa (Florida); *Aaron Ekblad, Barrie (2014 draft eligible); Matthew Finn, Guelph (Toronto); Slater Koekkoek, Windsor (Tampa Bay); *Darnell Nurse, Sault Ste. Marie (Edmonton); *Adam Pelech, Erie (N.Y. Islanders)
Forwards: *Josh Anderson, London (Columbus); *Connor Brown, Erie (Toronto); Michael Dal Colle, Oshawa (2014 draft eligible); *Max Domi, London (Phoenix); *Brendan Gaunce, Belleville (Vancouver); *Bo Horvat, London (Vancouver); Scott Kosmachuk, Guelph (Winnipeg); *Scott Laughton, Oshawa (Philadelphia); *Connor McDavid, Erie (2015 draft eligible); Brock McGinn, Guelph (Carolina); Zach Nastasiuk, Owen Sound (Detroit); Kerby Rychel, Windsor (Columbus)
Defensemen: Chris Bigras, (Colorado); *Joshua Brown, Oshawa (Florida); Trevor Carrick, Mississauga (Carolina); *Aaron Ekblad, Barrie (2014 draft eligible); *Darnell Nurse, Sault Ste. Marie (Edmonton); *Adam Pelech, Erie (N.Y. Islanders)
Forwards: *Josh Anderson, London (Columbus); Nicholas Baptiste, Sudbury (Buffalo); Samuel Bennett, Kingston (2014 draft eligible); *Connor Brown, Erie (Toronto); Mathew Campagna, Sudbury (2014 draft eligible); *Max Domi, London (Phoenix); *Brendan Gaunce, Belleville (Vancouver); *Bo Horvat, London (Vancouver); *Scott Laughton, Oshawa (Philadelphia); *Connor McDavid, Erie (2015 draft eligible); Chris Tierney, London (San Jose); Ryan Rupert, London (Toronto); Carter Verhaeghe, Niagara (Toronto)
Super Series schedule
Game 1 – Monday Nov. 18 at Gatineau, Quebec
Game 2 – Wednesday Nov. 20 at Sherbrooke, Quebec
Game 3 – Thursday Nov. 21 at Oshawa, Ontario
Game 4 – Monday Nov. 25 at Sudbury, Ontario
Game 5 – Wednesday Nov. 27 at Red Deer, Alberta
Game 6 – Thursday Nov. 28 at Lethbridge, Alberta
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