Brock Boeser and Jake Virtanen will each represent their countries at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship, marking the first time a Canucks first-round pick duo has done so since Luc Bourdon and Cory Schneider did it back in 2006.
Canucks fans won’t have to wait long to see the two go head-to-head as Canada and United States square off on Boxing Day (10am PT, TSN).
Note: Former first round picks Jordan Schroeder and Cody Hodgson both played at the 2009 World Juniors, however Schroeder was not yet a Canucks draft pick.
Jake Virtanen, Team Canada
Vancouver Canucks, NHL
1st round, 6th overall, in 2014
Virtanen will bring his 19 games of NHL experience to the Canadian line-up, where he will be counted on to be one of the top forwards. The 19-year-old recorded four points (1-3-4) in seven games during the 2015 edition, helping Canada win their first gold medal since 2009. This marks the fifth time Virtanen will wear the Team Canada jersey, having medaled each of the previous four times: 2013 World Under-17 Challenge (silver medal), 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial (gold medal), 2014 World Under-18’s (bronze medal) as well as the 2015 World Juniors (gold medal).
Canada Schedule (all times PST)
Saturday, December 26 (10:00am): vs. United States (TSN)
Monday, December 28 (10:00am): vs. Denmark (TSN)
Tuesday, December 29 (10:00am): vs. Switzerland (TSN)
Thursday, December 31 (10:00am): vs. Sweden (TSN)
Brock Boeser, United States
North Dakota, NCAA
1st round, 23rd overall, in 2015
Boeser will look to bring his goal-scoring ability to a talented United States team. The 18-year-old leads all NCAA freshman with 13 goals on the season, which has him tied for third among all NCAA skaters. Boeser represented the United States at the 2014 Ivan Hlinka Memorial (bronze medal, 8 PTS in 5 GP) and the 2014 World Junior A Challenge (gold medal, 5 PTS in 4 GP). Look for him to play alongside his North Dakota line mate, Nick Schmaltz.
United States Schedule (all times PST)
Saturday, December 26 (10:00am): vs. Canada (TSN)
Monday, December 28 (6:00am): vs. Sweden (TSN)
Wednesday, December 30 (10:00am): vs. Switzerland (TSN)
Thursday, December 31 (6:00am): vs. Denmark (TSN)