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Three top picks skipping Sweden junior camp

Wednesday, 08.03.2011 / 4:10 PM / 2012 World Junior Championship

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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Three top picks skipping Sweden junior camp
Three top picks skipping Sweden junior camp
Three players who could play key roles for Sweden at the 2012 World Junior Championship have been removed from the roster of players attending next week's junior evaluation camp in Lake Placid, N.Y.

All three were first-round picks at the 2011 Entry Draft -- left wing Gabriel Landeskog (No. 2, Avalanche), and defenseman Adam Larsson (No. 4, Devils) and Oscar Klefbom (No. 19, Oilers).

Landeskog and Larsson played on last year's team and would be locks for the 2012 tournament, but both have signed NHL contracts and likely will be playing in the League when the tournament is held, Dec. 26 to Jan. 5 in Calgary and Edmonton.

Replacing them at the camp are defensemen Johan Alm and Rasmus Bengtsson and center Sebastian Ottosson.

Bengtsson was a 2011 second-round pick of the Florida Panthers. Alm and Ottosson are eligible for the 2012 draft after going unselected in June.

The evaluation camp, which runs Aug. 6-13, will feature exhibition games against prospects competing for WJC spots from the U.S. and Finland.

Five players from last year's team that finished in fourth place will be at the camp -- defensemen John Klingberg and Patrik Nemeth, and forwards Johan Larsson, Johan Sundstrom, Max Friberg and Rickard Rakell.

Of the 23 players attending the camp, 18 have been drafted by an NHL team, including three taken in the first round of June's draft -- defenseman Jonas Brodin (No. 10, Wild), and forwards Mika Zibanejad (No. 6, Senators) and Rakell (No. 30, Ducks).

Eleven NHL teams will have at least one prospect there, led by three each from the Minnesota Wild and Chicago Blackhawks. Representing the Wild will be Brodin, goaltender Johan Gustafsson and forward Johan Larsson. Blackhawks prospects in attendance will be goaltender Johan Mattsson and forwards Joakim Nordstrom and Ludvig Rensfeldt.

The Ottawa Senators, Dallas Stars and Anaheim Ducks each will have two prospects at the camp.

Besides Alm and Ottosson, also eligible for the 2012 Entry Draft after going unselected last month are defenseman Joakim Ryan and forwards Erik Thorell and Ponthus Westerholm.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimleman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK
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