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(Page 38 of 39)
Prospects

No question about Nugent-Hopkins' prospects

Thursday, 09.02.2010 / 1:15 PM / Prospects

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

"Everyone knows the Hopkins kid is a top pick. At the Hlinka tournament in Slovakia, he was one of the top players. He's not a hidden secret and he played well (at RDO camp) even thought he was sick. He's got good hockey sense, creates time for himself and he's got the gift." -- Jim Nill

High-flying center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins wasn't about to take any of the general managers, scouts and coaches in attendance by surprise in August during the recent 2010 NHL Research, Development and Orientation Camp fueled by G Series.

Barring a major setback, he's a sure-fire top-five selection at the 2011 Entry Draft to be held in June in St. Paul, Minn.

As if the 17-year-old native of Burnaby, B.C., doesn't have an impressive enough resume, he wowed those sitting in the stands at the Toronto Maple Leafs' practice facility with his offensive skills, tenaciousness and exceptional acceleration throughout the two-day event.

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Despite silver medal, U.S. happy with Hlinka outcome

Wednesday, 08.18.2010 / 2:22 PM / Prospects

Michael Stainkamp - NHL.com Staff Writer

The U.S. team that traveled to Slovakia and the Czech Republic for the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament didn't need the extra motivation that came from playing Canada in the final. Getting to the title game was their goal since the beginning of July, when coach Tim Army put the team together.

"We wanted to win the gold medal," Army told NHL.com. "We put together a team that we felt would bring home a gold medal. We felt very, very good about where we were at. We let the kids know why they were with us and what they were going to bring to the team to make us better."

Things didn't work out as planned, as the U.S. lost 1-0 to Canada. The Canadians scored just 1:42 into the game and shut down a U.S. offense that had scored five goals in each of the previous three games.
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Canada tops U.S. to win third-straight Hlinka gold

Saturday, 08.14.2010 / 3:30 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Canada made it a hat trick of gold medals at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, topping the U.S., 1-0, in the final, played at Zimny  Stadion in Piestany, Slovakia.

The win is Canada's third straight at the elite summer under-18 championship, and its sixth title in the last seven years.

"A great effort, a great feeling," Canada coach George Burnett told Canadian Press. "When you put the time in that these guys have to prepare and go through this whole thing, and to come out on top, it's a pretty special feeling."
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U.S., Canada to meet in Hlinka final

Friday, 08.13.2010 / 2:29 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Once again, the U.S. and Canada will meet for supremacy in an international hockey tournament.

Both teams won their semifinal matches Friday at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament to advance to a battle in Saturday's final. It's the fourth time in 2010 the two nations will meet for a gold medal. The U.S. won the World Under-17 Challenge and World Junior Championship in January, while the Canada won Olympic gold in February.

Canada has won two straight Hlinka golds and five of the last six. The last time the U.S. was in the finals was 2006, when the event was called the Under-18 Junior World Cup. The U.S. has won the event only once, in 2003.

The U.S. moved to this year's final in dramatic fashion, rallying from a 3-1 second-period deficit to earn a 5-4 overtime victory against Sweden.
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U.S., Canada onto Hlinka semis

Thursday, 08.12.2010 / 10:16 AM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

"Everyone contributed to the win today. As the game went on, we played extremely well, and our penalty kill and power play were both outstanding."
-- U.S. coach Tim Army

The United States and Canada rolled to wins on the final day of round-robin play at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, and in the process earned the top spots in their groups.

The U.S. got goals from Tanner Sorenson and John Gaudreau in a 1:59 span midway through the second period against Finland to turn a 1-1 tie after 20 minutes into a 3-1 advantage. The U.S. scored twice more in the third period to skate away with a 5-2 victory, in a game played Wednesday at Alcaplast Arena, in Breclav, Czech Republic.

The victory clinched first place in Group A for the U.S.
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Hlinka tourney Day 2: Canada wins, U.S. loses

Tuesday, 08.10.2010 / 2:48 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Canada continued to roll Tuesday, while the United States lost in a shootout on the second day of the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.

Red Deer Rebels center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had a hat trick and Sarnia Sting right wing Brett Ritchie scored twice to lead Canada to a 7-3 victory against Switzerland, in Piestany, Slovakia.

The victory against Switzerland came one day after Canada defeated Sweden, 6-3.

Sault Ste. Marie center Daniel Catenacci and Saint John Sea Dogs center Jonathan Huberdeau each had a pair of assists, and Montreal Juniors defenseman Xavier Ouellet had a goal and an assist.
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Canada, U.S. win Hlinka openers

Monday, 08.09.2010 / 2:18 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Canada and the U.S. both were victorious on the opening day of the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.

Canada, the defending champion, opened its title defense by coming from behind for a 6-3 win against Sweden on Monday in Piestany, Slovakia. Sault Ste. Marie center Daniel Catenacci scored twice as Canada connected three times in the second period to rally from a 3-1 deficit.

Red Deer forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins opened the scoring for Canada with a power-play goal just 2:12 into the game, but Sweden scored the next three, capped by Oscar Klepbom's power-play goal 1:12 into the second period.

However, Lucas Lessio of the Oshawa Generals and Catenacci scored to tie it, and the Sarnia Sting's Brett Ritchie put Canada ahead for good. Peterborough Petes forward Matt Puempel scored 49 seconds into the third, and then Catenacci scored again for the final margin. 
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Invite to Canada camp latest accolade for LeBlanc

Monday, 08.09.2010 / 12:13 PM / Prospects

Sergei J. Feldman - NHL.com Staff Writer

Who would have thought getting into Harvard would be the easy part?

Having spent last season with the Crimson, Louis LeBlanc was faced with a life-altering decision: Should I stay or should I go? After careful deliberation, the No. 18 pick in the 2009 Entry Draft recently decided to leave school and sign a three-year entry-level contract with the Montreal Canadiens.

While thrilled about his choice, the 19-year-old center acknowledged the challenge.

"It was a hard decision, for sure," he told NHL.com. "I loved Harvard. Maybe one day I'll be back there to finish my degree, which would be something special. But I wanted to play more games and try to get closer to playing in the NHL."

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Healthy again, Budish making most of opportunity

Thursday, 08.05.2010 / 4:14 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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.
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Williams wants to use Hlinka as showcase tournament

Thursday, 08.05.2010 / 9:00 AM / Prospects

Michael Stainkamp - NHL.com Staff Writer

Jay Williams has been fighting to have his hockey skills noticed, because as a native of McLean, Va., he's not from a typical hotbed for hockey talent.

But the 17-year-old goaltender will get the opportunity to showcase himself when he backstops the U.S. team at the upcoming Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, which will be held Aug. 9-14 in Slovakia and the Czech Republic. With teams from Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland and Sweden among the eight teams competing, the tournament provides a great opportunity for the players to measure themselves against some of the top competition in the world at their age level.
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Quote of the Day

He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers