August 06 2014 11:49AM
On paper, he shouldn't be there. Based on pedigree, he doesn't make the invite list. Greg Chase is making a habit of beating the odds, and this time it's the national entry at the Christmas tournament Canadians love more than Timmy's coffee: The world junior team.
FIRST THINGS FIRST..
Let's be real: He shouldn't make the final team. Quoting TSN:
- Hockey Canada invited 41 players to take part in the development camp
that runs until Friday. The list includes 11 returning members from the
squad that finished fourth at the 2014 World Junior Hockey Championship
in Malmo, Sweden.
The list of forwards is daunting, and for a 7th round pick like Greg Chase, it should be over before it starts. Faced with the likes of Jonathan Drouin, Sam Bennett, Sam Reinhart, Michael Dal Colle, Max Domi, Bo Horvat, Curtis Lazar and Nick Ritchie, Chase would have to show up early and often in a good way to make this team as a role player.
Photo by Lisa McRitchie, used with permission
Game one is done against the Czechs, and Chase had two assists playing alongside Nick Paul and Frederik Gauthier. You can't find Chase's contribution in the news stories that ran, famous kids like Ekblad (concussion) and Lazar get the black ink. However, in looking at the boxscore:
Greg Chase contributed on a line that did not feature a lottery pick, and it doesn't really matter if he gets mentioned in the CP story. However, for Oiler fans this is another example of what Chase has been doing since before he was drafted: Showing up in good spots, turning heads and getting noticed.
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?
If Chase can make this team—even as a 4line agitator/winger who contributes when the opportunity arises, it represents an absolute home run for this prospect. The invite was awesome. Credit Greg Chase here, he took that invite as a means to a goal, not the prize itself.
This kid is something.
(Chase OKC photo by Rob Ferguson, all rights reserved).