A look at the top 13 prospects attending WJC camps
Friday, 12.07.2012 / 4:00 PM
Mike G. Morreale
Now that preliminary rosters for all competing teams in the 2013 World Junior Championship have been announced, expect plenty of healthy debate over which players should represent their countries when the two-week tournament commences in Ufa, Russia, on Dec. 26.
Though all countries are required to submit their WJC rosters to the International Ice Hockey Federation on Dec. 25, most will have already announced their 23-player lineup two days earlier.
Preliminary-round games in Group A will be held at the Sports Palace and those in Group B will be staged at Ufa Arena. The Group A field consists of defending gold medalist Sweden, Finland, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Latvia. In Group B, Canada, Russia, the United States, Slovakia and Germany will battle in preliminary-round action.
In addition to several top returnees and NHL-drafted players being named to selection camp rosters, there are many 2013 draft-eligible prospects in the mix. Here are 13 players who not only have a chance to survive the final cuts, but to hear their name announced in the early rounds of the NHL Draft next June in Newark, N.J.
1. Seth Jones, D, Team USA: Rated No. 1 among skaters in the Western Hockey League on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary league rankings, the 6-foot-3.5, 208-pound defenseman will serve as captain for Team Orr at the Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Jan. 16. Jones has seven goals, 23 points and a plus-23 rating in 27 games as a rookie with the Portland Winterhawks this season. Barring injury, he is a lock to earn a spot among the top defensive pair for the United States.