I will say I do have a tinge of disappointment looking at this years WJC lineups.
The US team, which should be a competitor for the medal if they get their coaching issues sorted out, doesn’t have any Canes prospects on their list of players for this tournament. But that was to be expected this year to be honest. Brian Dumoulin (2nd round 2009) was our best shot and he likely will not get the call until the 2011 tournament.
Canada, however, was far more disappointing for me in that they did not even tender an invite to Philippe Paradis. While Paradis wouldn’t have been counted on for his offense he likely could have played the 4th line grind it out role that Andrew Ladd did back on what was likely the strongest WJC team of all time in 2005.
But that doesn’t mean the Canes will be without representation, not by any means. 3 European defensemen should all be named to the teams of their respective counties for the upcoming tournament and we likely could have had a 4th in LW Mattias Lindstrom.
Michal Jordan, a now 3 time player for the Czech Republic in the tournament, has already been named captain for the Czech team.
Fins Tommi Kivisto and Rasmus Rissanen are also expected to be named to their WJC teams. Kivisto played for Finalnd last year registering 1 goal in 6 games and should be expected to play again this year despite not having the best of seasons so far split between the Jokerit SM-Liiga team and the Jokerit Jr A team.
Rissanen, on the other hand, has been a fast riser. Rissanen reminds me a lot of an Ulf Samuelsson type player, albeit a decent bit cleaner, and played a key role on the Finland U-18 team this past year. Unlike most defensemen from Finland he’s not afraid to get dirty and will drop the glove from time to time. He’s not without some offensive upside either with 3 goals and 4 assists in 25 games with Everett of the WHL. I fully expect him to be a 2 year player in the WJCs as Finland will need to add some grit to their team if they have any hopes of medaling this year with such strong teams put out by the Canada, Russia, Sweden and the United States.
Lindsrom, who was regarded as a virtual lock for the Swedish side this year heading into the season, suffered an injury and is not likely to return from surgery until after the trournament.