Koshan breaks down Team Canada's 22-man roster

By Terry Koshan, Toronto Sun

Zachary Fucale of Team Canada looks up ice against Team Russia during a pre-tournament exhibition game ahead of the IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on Friday December 19, 2014. (Dave Abel/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency)

Zachary Fucale of Team Canada looks up ice against Team Russia during a pre-tournament exhibition game ahead of the IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on Friday December 19, 2014. (Dave Abel/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency)

Canada will try to win gold at the world junior for the first time since 2009. If that happens, here are the teens who will get it done:

* — member of 2014 Canada junior team


1. Eric Comrie

  • 6-foot-1, 168 pounds
  • Edmonton, July 6, 1995
  • Tri-City (WHL), Winnipeg
  • Season stats: 14-10-0-0, 2.50 gaa, .921 save pctg, 1 SO
  • Skinny: Highest save percentage in the WHL among goalies who have played in at least 20 games ... Has played in just six playoff games in his career with Tri-City with one win ... Backed up Zach Fucale on Canada’s gold-medal winning team in 2012 Ivan Hlinka Memorial ... Son of The Brick co-founder Bill Comrie.

31. Zach Fucale

  • 6-foot-1, 181 pounds
  • Rosemere, Que., May 28, 1995
  • Quebec (QMJHL), Montreal
  • Season stats: 13-9-1-1, 3.20 gaa, .890 sace pctg, 2 SO
  • Skinny: Took over as starter for Canada last winter in Malmo from Jake Paterson ... Won Memorial Cup in 2013 with Halifax ... Had shutout in gold-medal game for Canada versus Finland in Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup in 2012 ... Recorded at least 32 victories in each of his first three seasons in the Quebec league.


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4. Madison Bowey

  • 6-foot-1, 195 pounds
  • Winnipeg, April 22, 1995
  • Kelowna (WHL), Washington
  • Season stats: 28 GP, 8-25-33, 36 PIM, +20
  • Skinny: Third time playing for Canada on the international stage ... Lone right-handed shot on the Canada blue line. Has a booming shot which should become a factor ... Third in scoring among WHL defencemen and leads blueliners with 16 power-play assists ... In a rarity for a defenceman, has two shorthanded goals.

3. Dillon Heatherington

  • 6-foot-3, 196 pounds
  • Calgary, May 19, 1995
  • Swift Current (WHL), Columbus
  • Season stats: 30 GP, 1-10-11, 34 PIM, -7
  • Skinny: Part of the Canadian team that won gold in the 2013 under-18 world championship ... Not much flash and dash but will keep opposing forwards honest behind the Canada blue line ... Will provide depth in the defence corps and could find a few shifts on the second penalty-killing unit.

2. Joe Hicketts

  • 5-foot-8, 186 pounds
  • Kamloops, B.C., May 4, 1996
  • Victoria (WHL), Detroit
  • Season stats: 31 GP, 8-30-38, 32 PIM, +10
  • Skinny: Little not to like about his comeback from arm injury ... Only defenceman on team who was not at summer development camp ... Leads all WHL defencemen in scoring ... Those who play against him say he uses his body more than his size would suggest ... Helped Canada win gold at 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.

5. Samuel Morin

  • 6-foot-7, 224 pounds
  • St-Henri, Que., July 12, 1995
  • Rimouski (QMJHL), Philadelphia
  • Season stats: 12 GP, 2-7-9, 16 PIM, 0
  • Skinny: Coaches are not worried about rust as Morin has played in just seven games since returning from a jaw injury. He lost 10-15 pounds when he was out thanks to a liquid diet ... Brings an imposing presence as Canada’s biggest defenceman ... Going to get his fair share of minutes on the penalty kill.

*7. Josh Morrissey

  • 6 feet, 194 pounds
  • Calgary, March 28, 1995
  • Kelowna (WHL), Winnipeg
  • Season stats: 27 GP, 7-14-21, 28 PIM, -9
  • Skinny: Experience an asset. Only holdover on Canada from 2014 blue line and will play for Canada for the fifth time ... Will be relied upon to quarterback the power play ... Had a goal and two assists in world junior in Sweden ... Voice of reason inside and outside the Canada dressing room.

25. Darnell Nurse

  • 6-foot-4, 189 pounds
  • Hamilton, Ont., Feb. 4, 1995
  • Sault Ste. Marie (OHL), Edmonton
  • Season stats: 19 GP, 6-13-19, 34 PIM, +3
  • Skinny: Has worked hard to improve defensively and make wiser decisions after he did not get invited to selection camp last year ... Played in two games for the Oilers before he was sent back to the Soo, where he had not letdown, reeling off a 12-game point streak ... Good luck getting an edge on him in front of the net.

6. Shea Theodore

  • 6-foot-2, 182 pounds
  • Aldergrove, B.C., Aug. 3, 1995
  • Seattle (WHL), Anaheim
  • Season stats: 10 GP, 2-6-8, 6 PIM, +5
  • Skinny: Didn’t make season debut with Thunderbirds until Nov. 22 because of an elbow injury ... Last season, led WHL defencemen with 57 assists and 79 points but in the midst of that was not invited to Canada’s selection camp ... Has a pair of gold medals in past championships patrolling Canada’s blue line.


  • 28. Lawson Crouse
  • 6-foot-4, 211 pounds
  • Mount Brydges, Ont., June 23, 1997
  • Kingston (OHL), 2015 NHL draft eligible
  • Season stats: 24 GP, 12-4-16, 55 PIM, 0
  • Skinny: Not only youngest player on the team, but also only forward on it who was at the summer camp ... Timely scorer: Five of his goals this season are insurance markers ... Made a positive impression on staff in second OHL Subway series game, in Kingston ... Has the smarts to make an impact on the forecheck.

16. Max Domi

  • 5-foot-10, 194 pounds
  • Toronto, March 2, 1995
  • London (OHL), Arizona
  • Season stats: 27 GP, 17-41-58, 31 PIM, +15
  • Skinny: Has evolved into Knights’ Mr. Everything ... Leads OHL with 21 power-play assists and has won two games this season in overtime ... Didn’t let a selection-camp snub a year ago influence his game negatively ... Few his age see the ice as well and are able to make as quick decisions with the puck.

10. Anthony Duclair

  • 5-foot-11, 194 pounds
  • Laval, Que., Aug. 26, 1995
  • N.Y. Rangers
  • Season stats: 18 GP, 1-6-7, 4 PIM, +4
  • Skinny: Averaging 12 minutes nine seconds a game with the Rangers ... Scored 50 goals last season for Quebec of the QMJHL after scoring 51 in the previous two seasons combined ... Ability at the world-junior level to be a scoring threat each time he is on the ice ... Agreed happily when Rangers loaned him

29. Robby Fabbri

  • 5-foot-10, 170 pounds
  • Mississauga, Ont., Jan. 22, 1996
  • Guelph (OHL), St. Louis
  • Season stats: 22 GP, 18-20-38, 32 PIM, +11
  • Skinny: Had been getting a look in the exhibition games on the point on power plays ... Nearly cracked the Blues’ roster coming out of training camp ... Often appears like he has the puck on a string ... In multiple-point games in nine of 11 matches before heading to Canada camp ... Seven power-play goals for Guelph.

*22. Frederik Gauthier

  • 6-foot-4, 215 pounds
  • St-Lin-Laurentides, Que., April 26, 1995
  • Rimouski (QMJHL), Toronto
  • Season stats: 15 GP, 8-6-14, 9 PIM, +10
  • Skinny: Has responded well after a rib injury dogged him through summer and into initial part of the season ... Doesn’t move quickly but is strong in the faceoff circle and effectively uses his body to block shots on the penalty kill ... Always looks to play defence first, a trait not common among teenaged hockey players.

*26. Curtis Lazar

  • 6 feet, 190 pounds
  • Salmon Arm, B.C., Feb. 2, 1995
  • Ottawa
  • Season stats: 27 GP, 1-6-7, 8 PIM, 0
  • Skinny: Major boost for Canada when the Senators loaned him ... Was one of Canada’s top forwards at 2014, recording seven points (three goals and four assist) in seven games ... Ripple of excitement when teammates learned he was coming back ... Taking on role as leader seriously and with plenty of enthusiasm.

*17. Connor McDavid

  • 6 feet, 182 pounds
  • Newmarket, Ont., Jan. 13, 1997
  • Erie (OHL), 2015 NHL draft eligible
  • Season stats; 18 GP, 16-35-51, 26 PIM, +34
  • Skinny: Ready to go after suffering hand injury in what could be his final fight at any level ... Points? Of course. Defensively minded? Yes. Leads OHL in plus-minus on top of everything else ... Held without a point in one game this season ... Led Canada in scoring and to gold in 2013 under-18 world championship.

20. Nick Paul

  • 6-foot-3, 198 pounds
  • Mississauga, Ont., March 20, 1995
  • North Bay (OHL), Ottawa
  • Season stats: 27 GP, 19-15-34, 28 PIM, +12
  • Skinny: Defensively sound and well on his way with Battalion to setting personal scoring highs ... Smart enough to throw his weight around but not run into penalty trouble at the same time ... Signed entry-level deal with Senators on Saturday ... Will provide solid depth ... Play in selection camp got progressively better.

*19. Nic Petan

  • 5-foot-9, 170 pounds
  • Delta, B.C., March 22, 1995
  • Portland (WHL), Winnipeg
  • Season stats: 26 GP, 6-27-33, 11 PIM, +6
  • Skinny: Getting better on defensive side of the puck after recording back-to-back 100-point seasons ... Second on Canada at 2014 world junior with four goals ... Has played in 71 playoff games in the WHL in four seasons ... Smart playmaker whose ability to pass the puck isn’t matched by most of his peers.

9. Brayden Point

  • 5-foot-8, 160 pounds
  • Calgary, March 12, 1996
  • Moose Jaw (WHL), Tampa Bay
  • Season stats: 29 GP, 17-27-44, 21 PIM, +11
  • Skinny: Eighth in WHL scoring despite giving up size to just about everyone he plays against ... For those who had not seen him play much, opened eyes in camp with his speed and determination ... Carried 12-game points streak into camp ... Helped Canada win gold at 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.

*23. Sam Reinhart

  • 6-foot-1, 185 pounds
  • West Vancouver, B.C., Nov. 6, 1995
  • Kootenay (WHL), Buffalo
  • Season stats: 15 GP, 8-19-27, 2 PIM, +5
  • Skinny: No letdown after Buffalo sent him back to junior, not that he is wired to have had one ... International resume includes two gold medals and a bronze ... Leadership a key; also ability to read the play ... Had five points (two goals and three assists) in seven games for Canada at world junior last year.

21. Nick Ritchie

  • 6-foot-3, 226 pounds
  • Orangeville, Ont., Dec. 5, 1995
  • Peterborough (OHL), Anaheim
  • Season stats: 25 GP, 14-18-32, 69 PIM, -10
  • Skinny: Coaches willing to look past the odd penalty if he can produce offensively ... Prototypical power forward who will be a force in the corners and on the forecheck as long as he toes the line of discipline ... On two occasions has won gold with Canada at under-18 events, most recently in the 2013 world championship.

18. Jake Virtanen

  • 6-foot-1, 208 pounds
  • Abbotsford, B.C., Aug. 17, 1996
  • Calgary (WHL), Vancouver
  • Season stats: 20 GP, 9-14-23, 36 PIM, +5
  • Skinny: Came into his own last season and has played well in 2014-15 after recovering from a shoulder injury ... While he can bring energy and willingness to forecheck on every shift, possesses a scoring touch that will take pressure off the top six ... Invited to summer camp but could not take part in team drills.

— Terry Koshan​

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