USA captain Seth Jones pose celebrates w

Seth Jones on U.S. World Junior squad: “We’re the best team”


Hot 2013 NHL Draft prospect Seth Jones seems like he’s becoming quite accustomed to generating hype.

The defenseman many believe will be the second pick of the next entry draft told TSN’s Mark Masters that the U. S. World Junior Championships squad is the team to beat on Thursday.

” … I think we’re the best team,” Jones said. “We have a lot of speed up front, we’re great defensively and we have good goaltending so I think we have all the pieces to win the gold medal.”

Masters points out that the United States failed to advance beyond the round robin stage in last year’s tournament, yet perhaps one could justify similar optimism for America’s squad as you would for Russia in the 2014 Olympics: everyone basically starts from Point A again.

Even so, some will say that he’s making bold statements – maybe even providing bulletin board material – but Jones seems nonplussed about such claims.

“That’s just confidence,” Jones said. “We can hang with any team here to be honest with you. There’s not much another team can do to really take us off our game.”

Either way, it’s tough not to love seeing such swagger from the son of former NBA journeyman “Popeye” Jones.

Memorial Cup champion goalie Appleby signs with Devils

Ken Appleby
The Canadian Press via AP
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Ken Appleby never got drafted, but his efforts during the New Jersey Devils’ training camp have earned him an entry-level contract, per the Bergen Record.

Although no team saw it fit to take him before the preseason, the 20-year-old is coming off of a very strong season. He had a 2.08 GAA and .924 save percentage in 50 games with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. He went on to lead them to a Memorial Cup championship and earned the the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the tournament’s top goalie.

Appleby is the fifth goaltender the Devils have under contract after Cory Schneider, Keith Kinkaid, Scott Wedgewood, and Yann Danis. He’ll likely begin the season in the ECHL.

Alexandre Goulet and Jacob Sweeney also participated in the Devils’ training camp on an amateur tryout basis, but both of them have been released.

PHT Morning Skate: NHL stars weigh in on McDavid

Connor McDavid
The Canadian Press via AP
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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Some of the NHL’s top players discuss Connor McDavid‘s potential and the hype surrounding him. (Toronto Sun)

While we’re on the subject, Wayne Gretzky recalls what it was like for him going into the NHL and what’s in store for McDavid. (Edmonton Sun)

Sam Gagner is about to start a key season in his career. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

It’s time for the Washington Capitals to make some tough calls, particularly when it comes to Derek Roy. (CSN Mid-Atlantic)

With Raffi Torres hearing scheduled for today, here’s a look back at his suspension history. (San Jose Mercury News)

The Chicago Blackhawks have gotten their championship rings. (