USA Hockey has selected the 29 players for its preliminary World Junior Hockey Championships training camp.
Auston Matthews, the consensus No. 1 overall pick for the ’16 draft that’s currently playing pro in Switzerland, headlines the list of invitees, along with Columbus prospect Zach Werenski, the highest draftee (eighth overall) of any player set to attend.
Werenski is joined by fellow ’15 first-rounders Brock Boeser (Vancouver) and Colin White (Ottawa).
Also invited were ’14 first-rounders Sonny Milano (Columbus) and Nick Schmaltz (Chicago).
You’ll probably recognize a couple surnames: Ryan MacInnis (son of Hockey Hall of Famer Al MacInnis), Kiefer Bellows (son of ex-Minnesota North Star Brian Bellows) and Matthew Tkachuk (son of longtime NHL power forward Keith Tkachuk). There’s also Casey Fitzgerald, the son of Devils assistant GM Tom Fitzgerald.
Among the notable omissions? Minnesota prospect Alex Tuch, taken 18th overall at the ’15 draft, and two Winnipeg prospects: Jack Roslovic (25th overall, ’15) and Kyle Connor (17th overall, ’15).
USA Hockey will bring its group of 29 to training camp at Boston University from Dec. 14-18, followed by a second camp in Finland from Dec. 19-24. It’s expected that, at the culmination of the Finnish-based camp, the U.S. roster will be trimmed to 23.
The 2016 World Juniors go from Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Helsinki.