The 2022 World Junior Championship kicks off later this week after the tournament was postponed from its original dates in December/January due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
And a handful of Chicago Blackhawks prospects learned this weekend that they’ll be representing their countries in the tournament.
Team USA announced its final roster on Sunday afternoon:
Three of those names should be familiar:
- Forward Dominic James (2022 sixth-round pick, 173rd overall)
- Forward Landon Slaggert (2020 third-round pick, 79th overall)
- Defenseman Wyatt Kaiser (2020 third-round pick, 81st overall)
Slaggert will also be sporting an “A” for the American side:
In a slight buzzkill, though, forward Frank Nazar — Chicago’s No. 13 overall pick in this year’s NHL Draft — was among the final cuts from Team USA:
Team USA’s final two cuts ahead of the World Juniors:— Scott Wheeler (@scottcwheeler) August 7, 2022
- Frank Nazar (CHI)
- Aiden Hreschuk (CBJ)
The good news for Nazar is that he should be on Team USA’s roster for the next World Juniors, which will arrive in just over four months.
Up in Canada, a Blackhawks prospect was a late addition to the roster following an injury to Minnesota Wild prospect Daemon Hunt:
Hockey Canada has announced that Daemon Hunt (MIN) can’t participate in the World Juniors due to injury. He’ll be replaced by Ethan Del Mastro (CHI).— Scott Wheeler (@scottcwheeler) August 7, 2022
Heartbreaking for Hunt, who misses his second consecutive World Juniors due to injury. He can’t seem to shake the injury bug.
A fourth-round pick (105th overall) of the Blackhawks in the 2021 NHL Draft, del Mastro spent last season playing with the OHL’s Mississauga Steelheads.
One other player to mention: Victor Stjernborg, a 2021 fourth-round pick (108th overall) will play for Sweden:
JVM-truppen släppt!— Tre Kronor (@Trekronorse) June 21, 2022
"Skickliga och spännande spelare. Vi har hög kompetens på varje position", säger förbundskapten Tomas Montén.
Mer information på vår hemsida: https://t.co/VpaeZIWB1d #wjc2022 #iihf #juniorkronorna @IIHFHockey pic.twitter.com/UxjMgovomb
The World Juniors start on Tuesday, Aug. 9 and are being played in Edmonton.