PROSPECTS INVITED TO PLAY
Canucks’ prospects Cody Hodgson, of the Brampton Battalion, has been invited to participate in the National Junior Selection camp in Regina, Saskatchewan at the Brandt Centre for a spot on the 2010 Canadian World Junior Championship team. Of the 36 invited to Regina only 22 players will make the teams final roster.
“On behalf of Hockey Canada, I would like to congratulate the players named today, along with their club teams, their parents and all the minor hockey coaches who helped them along with the way to get where they are today,” said Brad Pascall, Hockey Canada’s senior director of men’s national teams.
“The quality and skill of the 36 players invited to the camp next week is a testament of the hard work, commitment and development of all those involved in the Canadian minor hockey and junior hockey system,” stated Al Murray, Hockey Canada’s head scout for men’s national teams.
At the 2009 IIHF World U20 Championship in Ottawa, Ontario, Hodgson led all players in scoring recording 16 points (5-11-16) and two penalty minutes in six games played.
Canada has medaled at eleven straight IIHF World Junior Championships, including gold medal performances in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009, silver medals in 1999, 2002, 2003 and 2004 and bronze medals in 2000 and 2001.
For the third year in a row, Canucks’ prospect Jordan Schroeder, playing with the Minnesota Gophers, has also been invited to participate in The National Junior Selection camp in Grand Forks, N.D. to compete for a spot on the 2010 U.S. World Junior Championship team.
The Canucks first round pick in the 2009 entry draft, has led team USA in scoring for the past two tournaments.
At 5’8” and 175 lbs., the Burnsville, MN, native has notched four goals and six assists (4-6-10) in 14 games this season with the Gophers.
The tournament kicks off in Regina, Saskatchewan on Boxing Day.
GAME DAY NOTES
Tonight the Canucks face off against the fourth best team in the Eastern Conference, the New Jersey Devils. The Canucks, coming off a five-game home stand that ended with a 4-2 loss against the league’s best team the San Jose Sharks, are looking to improve their bumpy road record. Meanwhile, the Devils, fresh off a 6-1 victory over the New York Islanders, are looking for their seventh straight home win.
Forward Rick Rypien, who missed the last three games with an upper body injury, Ryan Johnson, who took a shot off the foot Sunday night, and Shane O’Brien are all expected to suit up against the Devils. While Darcy Hordichuk and defenceman Mathieu Schneider are expected to be a healthy scratches.
Last season Vancouver fell to a 5-3 loss at the hands of New Jersey. Tonight the Canucks look for redemption as this is the only meeting between these two teams this season. Puck drops at 4 PST.
Goaltender Roberto Luongo
and Devils netminder Martin Brodeur, who are both competing for the start with Team Canada at the 2010 Olympics, square off going head-to-head tonight.
And while, the Olympics are far from the players mind Canadian media can’t help but speculate and pit the two star netminders, who both hail from the same hometown of Montreal, Quebec, against one another.
"I want to win the job," said Brodeur. "I want to be good enough to be the top guy. I want Roberto to be in the hunt for it, I want Marc-Andre to be there, I think it is healthy. It's healthy that everybody has a chance to play No. 1 and that's the only way we are going to be successful because it's a short tournament and if everybody has their head clear about having a chance to play, they will come in and they'll be ready to play."
"You know what, it's just fun to play against Marty, I think more than anything else,” explained Luongo. “Every game is important for the season and obviously for the Olympics, so I don't think this game is more meaningful than any other one, but at the same time, like I said, I enjoy facing Marty. He is one of the greatest goalies of all time."