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Canada blanks U.S. 4-0 in Ivan Hlinka final

Saturday, 08.10.2013 / 12:17 PM / Prospects

Canada won the 2013 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka on Saturday by blanking the United States 4-0 in the gold medal game in Piestany, Slovakia, giving the Canadians their sixth consecutive gold medal in the Under-18 tournament.

Michael Dal Colle, Jayce Hawryluk, Aaron Ekblad and Brendan Lemieux scored for Canada, which dominated play for most of the game. Goaltender Julio Billia was perfect, though he wasn't tested often as the Canadians stifled the U.S. attack. His best save came early in the second period, when he stopped Ryan Wagner's wrister after a turnover.

Turmoil in past, Kerdiles working toward WJC spot

Friday, 08.09.2013 / 4:30 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Nicolas Kerdiles certainly has come a long way in the past year.

It was about a year ago, the Anaheim Ducks prospect said -- during the 2012 USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp -- that he learned of an inquiry by the NCAA into his amateur status. The resulting suspension nearly forced him to leave what he called his "dream" hockey situation, and submarined his collegiate hockey career before it even started.

"So many little things went on," he told "I don't understand still what exactly it was. At this point I'm over it and I'm just looking forward to having a fresh start this year."

In October 2012, the NCAA announced Kerdiles would be suspended for the entire 2012-13 season for violating the group's amateurism rules, because of an issue with payment for the hotel Kerdiles and his family stayed at during the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh.

U.S. in Hlinka title game after holding off Czechs

Friday, 08.09.2013 / 3:21 PM / Prospects

Ryan Wagner got in behind the Czech Republic defense and scored the go-ahead goal 8:46 into the third period as the United States advanced to the championship game of the 2013 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka with a 5-3 win Friday in Breclav, Czech Republic.

The U.S. will face Canada, a 3-1 winner over Russia in Friday's other semifinal, for the tournament title on Saturday in Piestany, Slovakia. The Czech Republic and Russia square off for third place back in Breclav.

"The guys really dug down deep to get the win," coach Bob Corkum told the USA Hockey website. "It was really hot and humid in the arena, but they battled through everything and got the job done when it mattered.

"Now it's important for them to get rest and fluids with the quick turnaround, and then we'll get ready for tomorrow."

McDavid drawing praise from Canada coach Sutter

Thursday, 08.08.2013 / 8:44 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Connor McDavid scored a goal and showcased his speed and tenacity on the forecheck. He even impressed his coach, and Brent Sutter isn't the type of person to toss compliments around like souvenir pucks for the kids.

But ask McDavid how he played and the answer is a bit different.

"I'd say like a C-plus," the 16-year-old phenom said following Canada's 7-3 rout of Sweden here at Herb Brooks Arena. "I don't think it was my best game by any means, but certainly wasn't my worst. Lots of stuff I can build off of."

It's hard to see where McDavid, who is at development camp aiming to become the first 16-year-old to make Canada's national junior team since Sidney Crosby in 2004, still needs improvement.

Erne makes the difference for U.S.

Thursday, 08.08.2013 / 5:38 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- As the United States and Finland went to a shootout Thursday, U.S. coach Don Lucia was hoping one of his players would stand up and make a difference.

Adam Erne stood up.

"He said, 'Who wants to go.' and no one said anything so I said, 'I'll go,'" Erne said of Lucia. "Every time he said 'Who wants to go,' and he looked at me and gave me the nod and I kept going."

After scoring the game-tying goal in regulation, Erne scored twice in the shootout, tying the game with a goal in the sixth round and then getting the winner in the seventh round of what ended as a 4-3 victory for the United States.

Sweden defeats U.S. with power play at WJC camp

Wednesday, 08.07.2013 / 9:00 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- U.S. coach Don Lucia has spent the better part of this week's National Junior Evaluation Camp advising his players about what can happen when you give a talented team like Sweden an excessive amount of power-play opportunities.

So far, it doesn't appear the lessons are sinking in.

"That's about eight power-play goals in three games," Lucia said. "Hopefully they got a little hockey IQ so you can figure that out."

Through three games against the United States, facing a pair of split-squad teams and a cut-down group, Sweden has scored eight of its 12 goals with the man-advantage, including two on seven attempts in a 4-0 victory Wednesday.

Reinhart puts skills on display in Canada victory

Wednesday, 08.07.2013 / 5:10 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Sam Reinhart is viewed by many as the early favorite to be the first player picked at the 2014 NHL Draft, and on Wednesday against Finland he showed why.

Reinhart, who plays for the Kootenay Ice of the Western Hockey League, scored a goal, showed his puck management skills and killed penalties as Canada made its debut here at the USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp with a 5-3 victory against Finland.

Reinhart is known as an offensive dynamo -- he led Kootenay in goals (35), assists (50) and points (85) last season -- but he was a key part of Canada's perfect 6-for-6 effort on the penalty kill.

"I know Sam is an 18-year-old player," Canada coach Brent Sutter said. "He's a very good hockey player and I have no problem whatsoever putting him in all those key situations."

Choosing hockey has proven right path for Copp

Wednesday, 08.07.2013 / 2:39 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

If you look in the high-school record books for the state of Michigan, you'll find Andrew Copp's name right at the top.

But don't look for the Winnipeg Jets prospect and United States national junior team hopeful in the state's hockey record book. No, for Copp, a native of Ann Arbor, you have to flip through the state football record book.

There, at the top of the listings for most passing yards and passing touchdowns in a game, you'll see Andrew Copp, senior, Skyline High School.

Sept. 23, 2011, against crosstown rival Pioneer High School, Copp threw for a state-record 557 yards and seven touchdowns, but his team lost 52-49.

Sutter excited to get junior hopefuls into game action

Tuesday, 08.06.2013 / 6:30 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- It's been seven years since Brent Sutter has gone about building Canada's national junior team, but so far he's enjoyed being back in his current situation, and expects the fun to continue as Canada joins the United States, Finland and Sweden here for USA Hockey's National Junior Evaluation Camp.

After three days of skating at the Montreal Canadiens' practice facility in Brossard, Quebec, Canada hit the ice at Herb Brooks Arena on Tuesday for the first time.

"It's been a good three days," Sutter said, "and it'll be another good few days here."

The good times start Wednesday afternoon when Canada faces Finland. While it's hockey in August, Sutter has in mind a few things he's hoping to see from his players.

USA Hockey ready for further evaluations after cuts

Tuesday, 08.06.2013 / 3:00 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- For USA Hockey, it simply was a matter of being able to divide quality ice time among 31 players easier than it was to split it among 44.

That's why 13 players were released Tuesday from the USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp -- to give the coaching staff a smaller number of players to work with, and with it the ability to easier implement the chosen style of play.

"The reality is for the camp, what we need to do is as quality an evaluation as we can, and with three games left, it's hard to have 44 players in camp and still get guys into the flow and the mix," said Jim Johannson, USA Hockey's assistant executive director of hockey operations and the general manager of the 2014 United States national junior team. "We cut down to the 31 players remaining [Tuesday] to play the next three games and give us more of an opportunity to put players in situations we want to see them in."

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Quote of the Day

Life's about opportunity and how you respond to that opportunity, and obviously he must have some swagger about him, some confidence about him, because he was solid. He made some good saves. He was 6-foot-3 on every shot, which is a good thing for a goalie. He played well. We got a win.

— Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock on rookie goaltender Garret Sparks, who made 24 saves in his first NHL start, a 3-0 win vs. Oilers
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