COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Forty-three players have been invited to the 2020 World Junior Summer Showcase that will be held from July 24-Aug. 1 in Plymouth, Michigan, at USA Hockey Arena. The Showcase serves as an evaluation camp to assist in selecting the U.S. National Junior Team that will compete in the 2021 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship Dec. 26, 2020, through Jan. 5, 2021, in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alberta.
“We’re excited to have our players and staff together,” said John Vanbiesbrouck (Detroit, Michigan), general manager of the U.S. National Junior Team and assistant executive director of hockey operations at USA Hockey. “While Finland, Sweden and Canada won’t be joining us as we’ve been used to in past years, this will provide a great opportunity to have our players back on the ice and begin the process in earnest of building our team for the World Junior Championship.
“With the current pandemic, we’ll be doing some things differently, and that’s okay. It’s exciting to see rinks opening back up throughout the country and we’re most appreciative of the efforts of Dr. Mike Stuart from the Mayo Clinic, our chief medical and safety officer, among others, for guiding us in best practices to ensure the safest possible environment for our players and everyone involved.”
Of the 43 players attending, nine are returnees from last year’s U.S. National Junior Team that competed in the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ostrava and Trinec, Czech Republic. Spencer Knight (Darien, Connecticut) is the lone member from the 2019 National Junior Team that won a silver medal in Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia. Additionally, 19 players have won medals at IIHF events while a total of 30 players have skated on at least one U.S. select team.
The United States enters the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship seeking its fifth medal in six years after earning a record four-consecutive medals: gold in 2017, silver in 2019, and bronze in both 2018 and 2016.
“We’re thankful to everyone involved in all the planning that has happened to date and continues to take place,” said Gavin Regan, vice president of USA Hockey and chair of the organization’s International Council. “As hockey returns, we look forward to hosting our camp and we’ll certainly do it safely.”
NOTES: In total, 38 of the 43 players have played or are committed to play college hockey, including 23 players who played in the NCAA last season … Fifteen players competed in the United States Hockey League last season, America’s only Tier 1 junior hockey league … Thirteen players participated in the 2020 BioSteel All-American Game, including the game’s most valuable player Jake Sanderson (Whitefish, Montana) … The 43 players invited to the Showcase come from 16 different states including New York (8), Massachusetts (7), California (5), Minnesota (4), Illinois (3), Texas (3), Michigan (2), Rhode Island (2), Wisconsin (2), Connecticut (1), Georgia (1), Indiana (1), Montana (1), North Dakota (1), New Jersey (1) and Washington (1) … A total of 25 players were selected in the 2019 NHL Draft, when for the first time in NHL Draft history, seven of the first 15 selections were American… The invited players include 27 who previously played for USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program … Nate Leaman (Providence, Rhode Island) is the head coach of the 2021 U.S. National Junior Team with Ted Donato (Cambridge, Massachusetts), Kris Mayotte (Ann Arbor, Michigan), and Steve Miller (Columbus, Ohio) serving as assistant coaches, and Theresa Feaster (Providence, R.I.) serves as video coach … For more information about the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship click here.