COYOTES PROSPECTS BLAKE WHEELER AND KEVIN PORTER
NAMED TO THE 2006 U.S. NATIONAL JUNIOR TEAM
GLENDALE, ARIZONA --- USA Hockey announced that Phoenix Coyotes prospects Blake Wheeler and Kevin Porter were among the 22 players named to the 2006 United States National Junior Team today.
"These selections confirm the positive and ongoing development of our two prospects," said Coyotes' senior executive vice president and general manager Michael Barnett. "The World Juniors will afford them the opportunity to gain invaluable experience in a world-class showcase event."
The squad will compete at the 2006 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in Vancouver, Kamloops and Kelowna, British Columbia from Dec. 26, 2005 to Jan. 5, 2006. The roster is comprised of the best American players under the age of 20.
In 16 games this season with the University of Minnesota (WCHA), Wheeler has collected 4 goals, 6 assists and 10 points in his freshman season. He ranks tied for 4th on Minnesota in goals and 5th in points. The 19-year-old native of Robbinsdale, Minnesota will be making his first appearance at the World Junior Tournament. The Coyotes drafted the 6-foot-5, 200-pound right wing in the 1st round (5th overall) of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.
Porter, 19, is one of six players returning from last year's team. In 15 games this season with the University of Michigan (CCHA), Porter has registered 9 goals, 5 assists and 14 points. He ranks tied for 1st on Michigan in goals and tied for 4th in points. The Coyotes drafted the 5-foot-11, 194-pound left wing in the 4th round (119th overall) of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. Porter is a native of Detroit, Michigan.