Forwards Logan Stankoven and Caedan Bankier of the Kamloops Blazers are two of 13 Western Hockey League players who will participate in the national junior team’s selection camp, which will get underway on Friday, Dec. 9, in Moncton.
“We are excited to unveil the 29 players who will begin our journey at selection camp in Moncton as we look ahead to the 2023 World Juniors,” national junior team director of player personnel Alan Millar said in a press release. “This is an experienced and skilled group and we expect a competitive selection camp that will lead to difficult decisions when naming a final roster.”
Eight WHL Clubs will send at least one player to the camp, which will determine who cracks the roster for the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship, which will take place from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5 in Halifax and Moncton.
The Seattle Thunderbirds will be represented by four players. The Blazers and Prince George Cougars boast two invitees.
The Everett Silvertips, Kelowna Rockets, Regina Pats, Vancouver Giants and Winnipeg Ice will each send one player to the camp.
Invited WHLers include goaltenders Tyler Brennan (Prince George) and Thomas Milic (Seattle), defencemen Nolan Allan (Seattle), Kevin Korchinski (Seattle), Carson Lambos (Winnipeg), Ethan Samson (Prince George) and Olen Zellweger (Everett) and forwards Bankier, Stankoven, Connor Bedard (Regina), Colton Dach (Kelowna), Zack Ostapchuk (Vancouver) and Reid Schaefer (Seattle).
Stankoven, Bedard, Lambos, Ostapchuk and Zellweger were part of the Canadian team that captured gold at the 2022 world juniors this past August in Edmonton.
The coaching and support staff for Canada’s entry at the 2023 world juniors includes four WHL personnel.
Silvertips’ head coach and general manager Dennis Williams will serve as Canada’s head coach, while Lethbridge Hurricanes’ bench boss Brent Kisio has been named an assistant coach.
Prince Albert Raiders’ goaltending coach Kelly Guard will act as goaltending consultant while Regina equipment manager Gord Cochran will serve in a similar role.
Kamloops players who crack the national junior team roster are expected to miss at least nine Blazers’ games if Canada reaches the gold medal game.