Going for gold: Canucks loan Virtanen to Team Canada for WJHC

Associated Press

It seemed likely to happen, but on Sunday the Vancouver Canucks confirmed that they have loaned Jake Virtanen to Team Canada for the upcoming World Junior Championship.

“Adding Jake to our roster brings another layer of leadership and experience that will benefit the team and our younger players who are going to look to Jake, Lawson (Crouse), Joe (Hicketts), and Brayden (Point) as we move along through the championship,” said Scott Salmond, vice-president of hockey operations and national teams, Hockey Canada. “We want to thank the Vancouver Canucks’ organization for working with us through this process.”

Virtanen has one goal and four points in 19 games with the Canucks this season, but he hasn’t played Nov. 30 because of an upper-body injury.

The 19-year-old just completed a two-game conditioning stint with the Utica Comets of the AHL.

Virtanen helped Canada win the gold medal at last year’s tournament.

With the tournament being held in Finland this year, here’s a fun fact for you:

Team Canada will have to cut two more forwards before the tournament starts on Dec. 26.

To see an updated list of Team Canada’s roster, click here.

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