When Zach Budish
arrived for USA Hockey's junior evaluation camp in Lake Placid in the summer of 2009, he was nowhere near reaching his full ability and, not surprisingly, he wasn't a part of the team that won World Junior Championship gold in Saskatoon.
But that camp represented his first major ice time since suffering a serious knee injury that ended his 2008-09 season before it even started.
This time around, Budish is healthy and in top shape, and is aiming for a spot on the 2011 U.S. WJC squad that will defend its title in Buffalo this year.
Budish, a two-sport star heading into his senior year at Edina (Minn.) High School, was injured playing football in October 2008. He tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee and surgery ended his hockey season after just 15 games. He didn't get back on the ice until March 2009, and didn't play a game until he arrived in Lake Placid.