Team Canada made its final cuts for the World Junior squad on Thursday, and to nobody’s surprise Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Morgan Rielly was named to the team. Rielly and Dougie Hamilton figure to make up Canada’s top defensive pairing, now that Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Ryan Murray is out with a shoulder injury.
Defenseman and Carolina Hurricanes draft pick Ryan Murphy finally cracked the team on his third attempt. Team Canada head coach Steve Spott, who also coaches Murphy on the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League, delivered the good news.
Two 17-year-old forwards were also selected in Halifax Moosehead teammates Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin. With the lockout, Canada had plenty of older players available this year, but MacKinnon and Drouin were just too impressive in selection camp to let go.
The most surprising of the final cuts may have been Matthew Dumba. The Minnesota Wild drafted him seventh overall in this past summer’s entry draft, but Dumba couldn’t overcome an extremely deep blueline to make the team.
The final 23-man roster shakes down like this:
Goalies: Malcolm Subban, Jordan Binnington, Jake Patterson
Defensemen: Morgan Rielly, Dougie Hamilton, Griffin Reinhart, Xavier Ouellet, Scott Harrington, Ryan Murphy, Tyler Wotherspoon
Forwards: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Mark Scheifele, Jonathan Huberdeau, Ryan Strome, Nathan MacKinnon, Jonathan Drouin, Charles Hudon, Boone Jenner, Anthony Camara, Phillip Danault, J.C. Lipon, Brett Ritchie, Ty Rattie