Team Canada plays the Americans today in the latest battle with our friends to the south. The World Juniors have a special place in the hearts of this nation, partly because it’s a preview of coming attractions (see photo). Edmonton Oiler fans have learned to pay special attention to the World Juniors over the years. It’s a chance to see future Oilers and has been from the beginning.
Pick a former Oiler star and chances are he played for Team Canada at the World Junior’s. Here’s a partial list:
- Dave Hunter 7gp, 6-0-6 (1977)
- Wayne Gretzky 6gp, 8-9-17 (1978)
- Marc Habscheid 7gp, 6-6-12 (1982)
- Gord Sherven 7gp, 1-3-4 (1983)
- Jeff Beukeboom 3gp, 1-0-1 (1985)
- Selmar Odelein 7gp, 1-5-6 (1985)
- Emanuel Viveiros 7gp, 1-1-2 (1986)
- Martin Gelinas 7gp, 0-2-2 (1989)
- Geoff Smith 7gp, 0-1-1 (1989)
- Ralph Intranuovo 7gp, 3-2-5 (1993)
- Tyler Wright 7gp, 3-3-6 (1993)
- Nick Stadjuhar 7gp, 1-4-5 (1994)
- Ryan Smyth 7gp, 2-5-7 (1995)
- Mike Watt 5gp, 1-2-3 (1996)
- Boyd Devereaux 7gp, 4-0-4 (1997)
- Jason Chimera 7gp, 2-2-4 (1999)
- Jarret Stoll 7gp, 0-2-2 (2001)
- Danny Syvret 6gp, 1-2-3 (2005)
- Andrew Cogliano 6gp, 1-4-5 (2006)
- Andrew Cogliano 6gp, 1-2-3 (2007)
- Sam Gagner 6gp, 0-0-0 (2007)
- Jordan Eberle 6gp, 6-7-13 (2009)
- Jordan Eberle 6gp, 8-5-13 (2010)
- Taylor Hall 6gp, 6-6-12 (2010)
Curtis Hamilton and Olivier Roy joined that list this season. That’s a helluva list.
The ultimate prize awaits four teams: Canada, Russia, Sweden and the United States of America. Canada is not the favorite, in fact a reasonable seeding would have them 3rd behind the Swedes and the defending champions. Never go against Canada when the sporting event takes place on ice or involves drinking adult beverages WITH ice. It’s a loser’s bet.
Game time for RUS-SWE is 1:30 this afternoon and the CAN-USA game goes at 5pm. tsn has the video and Team 1260 the audio.
Bless you boys, bring back the Zeta-Jones.