The climb to the apex of hockey’s glory begins now.
Two Silvertips, as a part of hockey’s select company, are on the ground floor once again. Defenseman Noah Juulsen and goaltender Carter Hart start their campaign for Hockey Canada’s final roster at the World Junior Championships (this winter in Montreal and Toronto) at the program’s Summer Showcase.
“Preseason style” games against competing countries will follow.
Hart and Juulsen, who will participate in the Showcase for the second straight year, were selected among 41 players to join Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Summer Development Camp in Toronto, July 30-Aug. 2 and play in a four-game series from Aug. 3-6 against the United States, Sweden, and Finland in Plymouth, Mich. The National Junior Team camp will be monitored as part of a selection process for 22 players chosen to represent Canada at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship, Dec. 26, 2016 to Jan. 5, 2017 in Toronto and Montreal.
Hart, 17, is listed as the #2 goaltender (North American) by NHL Central Scouting in the final rankings prior to the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, this Friday and Saturday in Buffalo. This season, his second full year as Silvertips goaltender, he earned the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Year award and Del Wilson Memorial Trophy as WHL Goaltender of the Year.
The 6-foot-1, 170-pound goaltender was named Silvertips Most Valuable Player in 2015-16, earning a WHL best 35 wins and was second in goals against average (2.14), tied for second in shutouts (6), and second in minutes (3,693), en route to a 35-23-1-3 record and First Team All-Star selection in the Western Conference of the WHL. He suited up in the CHL/NHL Prospects Game in Vancouver and last summer earned a gold medal with Team Canada at the 2015 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.
Juulsen, 19, was named to the WHL Second All-Star Team of the Western Conference for the WHL’s 50th season. He posted 28 points (7g-21a) and was tied for second on the Silvertips with 11 power play assists in 63 games. Representing Team WHL with Hart at this past season’s Canada-Russia Series, he was selected by the Montreal Canadiens in the first round (26th overall) of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, skated in one preseason game with Montreal, and returned to post four points (2g-2a) in his first three WHL games this season.
The 6-foot-2, 185 pound defenseman has 90 points (18g-72a) and a +33 rating in 191 career WHL games with the Silvertips. He skated in the 2014-15 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game and is one of 17 players in Silvertips history to be drafted by an NHL club, earning back-to-back honors as recipient of the Silvertips Most Dedicated Player award.
The World U17 Hockey Challenge phase of the Summer Showcase recently came to a wrap, featuring Silvertips forward Brett Kemp, defenseman Gianni Fairbrother, and assistant coach Mitch Love.