We've been teased all week with waves of roster cuts, but we finally know the Team Canada composition for the upcoming WJC. This is a good time to scoop up some players who will see big value increases in keeper leagues due to the hype alone. Once the tournament ends, take advantage of that commotion to sell high on any prospects that surprised during the tournament – these opportunities dont come along often. The Tampa Bay Lightning lead all NHL clubs with 3 prospects attending, while St. Louis, Colorado and Ottawa each have 2 draft picks on the squad.
The selections up front are slightly surprising, the main eyebrow-raisers being the lack of scoring forwards Nick Suzuki (VGK), Kole Lind (VAN), and Cody Glass (VGK). If the team is unable to put the puck in the net or just looks like it lacks dynamic movement, expect the Vegas and Vancouver fanbases to be vocal.
Nick Suzuki’s last two seasons: 163 points in 108 games.— Scott Wheeler (@scottcwheeler) December 16, 2017
Alex Formenton's: 55 points in 99 games. That’s a 124-point 82-game pace versus 46-point pace.
Expect last year's returnees Mcleod, Dube, and Raddysh to be leaned on by the familiar coaching staff – these guys in particular will probably see a huge value bump for you lucky keeper league owners.
The back end looks pretty much as expected going into the selection process. There was a chance of Josh Mahura (ANH) stealing a spot, but dont think anyone is too surprised by the 7 names picked. Clague, Bean, and Fabbro are all returnees so expect lots of ice time unless a newcomers makes a strong push. ***UPDATE*** Dante Fabbro has suffered an injury and Josh Mahura has been invited back to the team to practice.
Carter Hart was always going to be Canada's undisputed starter, but Point's successful battle for the backup spot caused another surprise as this meant Michael DiPietro (VAN) was left off the lineup. With Hart presumably set to start most games anyways, this decision will only matter if an injury occurs – in which case DiPietro will be called up, so no real harm done.
Only one first NHL goal to share this week:
Travis Sanheim sneaks down from the blueline to be wide open:
Fantasic news for hockey podcasting this week:
Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman have announced a 31 Thoughts podcast to debut in the New Year. Get excited for two of the best in the business!
This afternoon we finished up sorting out details on a new podcast we’ll launch in January. It’s a weekly with a heavy lean towards news/opinion and I’m looking forward to getting started. I’ll let my new podcast partner take it from here. @FriedgeHNIC the floor is yours….— Jeff Marek (@JeffMarek) December 15, 2017
Thank you for reading, and happy holidays heading intot the WJC season!