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Buckles tops draft-eligibles at Canada East camp

by Adam Kimelman /

Hockey Canada on Monday announced the 60 players who will attend a training camp for the team Canada East will take to the World Junior A Challenge, to be held Nov. 5-11 at the Mariners Centre in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia.

The Canada East camp will be held Oct. 28-31 at the MasterCard Centre in Toronto. Players for the camp were selected from the Canadian Junior Hockey League's five eastern Junior A leagues: the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League (NOJHL), Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL), Central Canada Hockey League (CCHL), Ligue de hockey junior AAA du Québec (LHJAAAQ) and the Maritime Hockey League (MHL).

Among the players picked were 54 players eligible for the 2013 NHL Draft. Topping that group is Matt Buckles, a center with the St. Michael's Buzzers (OJHL). The 6-foot-1.25, 205-pound forward is tied for fifth in the league with 22 points in 16 games. He earned a B rating from NHL Central Scouting in its preliminary rankings of players to watch for this year's draft.

Four other players earned C rankings from Central Scouting -- goalie Anderson Snair of the Metro Shipbuilders (MHL); defensemen Chad Duchesne of Kingston Voyageurs (OJHL) and Christian Weidauer of Carleton Place Canadiens (CCHL); and forward Blaine Byron of Kemptville 73's (CCHL).

Greg Walters, who coaches the Georgetown Raiders (OJHL), will coach the team.

"Canada’s five eastern Junior A leagues have some tremendous talent and we're very excited about the 60 players we have invited to selection camp," Walters told Hockey Canada's website. "We're expecting these players to battle hard for the 22 spots on the Canada East roster, and we think this group gives us the best chance to improve on last year's silver medal."

Canada East will be in Group B, along with Switzerland and the United States. Canada West, the Czech Republic and Russia will comprise Group A.

Contact Adam Kimelman at Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

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