Team Canada’s roster for the world junior hockey championship provides a seat at an elite table.
On Wednesday morning, two members of the London Knights walked through the dining room door.
Both captain Luke Evangelista and number one goaltender Brett Brochu were named to the roster for Team Canada’s final selection camp, which will be held in Calgary from Dec. 9 to 13.
A little of the pressure was removed from Brochu at the selection camp announcement when it was revealed that there will be no cuts among Canadian goalies and that Brochu will join Sebastian Cossa of the Edmonton Oil Kings and Dylan Garand of the Kamloops Blazers will be the three goaltenders who will represent Canada at the 2022 tournament, which takes place from Dec. 26 to January 2022 in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alta.
Evangelista is among 21 forwards vying for spots but comes in having hit the 20-goal mark in just 18 games this season. Evangelista is also looked at in a positive way for his versatility.
Team Canada head coach Dave Cameron described the process of choosing which players make it and which ones don’t as being similar to putting different clubs into a golf bag.
“We still have some drivers to be determined and some putters to be determined,” said Cameron.
Cameron coached Team Canada to a silver medal in Buffalo, N.Y., in 2011 in one of the more memorable gold medal games. Russia erased a 3-0 Team Canada lead with five unanswered goals in the third period.
Cameron was also an assistant coach for Team Canada at the world hockey championship in 2016 when Canada won gold.
Only seven players from the Ontario Hockey League were named to this year’s final selection camp roster. Along with Brochu and Evangelista, defencemen Jack Thompson (Sudbury Wolves) and Ryan O’Rourke (Soo Greyhounds) and forwards Mason McTavish (Peterborough Petes), Will Cuylle (Windsor Spitfires) and Shane Wright (Kingston Frontenacs) were chosen.
There will be two selection camp games on Dec. 11 and 12, which will be key in cracking the final roster.
Team Canada will play pre-tournament games during the week of Dec. 20 and then start the tournament on Boxing Day against the Czech Republic.