Flames kids survive first Team Canada cuts

Ryan Pike
December 13 2012 09:23AM

 

 

Although they aren't exactly favorites to make the team, a pair of Calgary Flames prospects survived first cuts at Team Canada's World Junior team selection camp on Wednesday evening.

Despite five guys getting cut from the Team Canada preliminary roster – leaving 31 bodies in camp – goaltender Laurent Brossoit of the Edmonton Oil Kings and defenseman Tyler Wotherspoon of the Portland Winterhawks have survived.

Brossoit is one of four goaltenders in camp. He allowed one goal on 18 shots in half of the inter-squad game on Tuesday night and one goal on 19 shots in net for the University of Alberta team in half of their game with Canada on Wednesday afternoon. Brossoit is notoriously streaky, but he's been quite calm, cool and collected in net this week. He struggled in the shootout on Tuesday, though.

Brossoit is fighting for one of three roster spots (the third-stringer won't play and will be with the team as an emergency replacement) with Malcolm Subban, Jordan Binnington and Jake Paterson. Subban has arguably been the worst netminder of the foursome and his performance this week may give Brossoit – the only other guy with big-game experience in camp – an edge for one of the spots.

Wotherspoon remains as one of 10 defenders in camp. He's likely fighting for one of two available roster spots. He was fairly strong in both of his games this week, but didn't really jump into the play much. He also wasn't really burned on any plays, except for a fairly silly neutral-zone penalty in the inter-squad game. Wotherspoon doesn't play a particularly showy game, relying on smart positioning and reading the play to make up for a bit of a lack of foot-speed, but he's looked like one of the better blueliners in camp so far (along with Frank Corrado).

Eight more bodies are expected to be cut on Thursday – likely a goaltender, three defensemen and five forwards. Team Canada practices in Calgary on Saturday before heading to Finland for pre-tournament games. The World Juniors begin on Boxing Day.

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Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's covered the Flames and the NHL since 2010. His work can also be found at The Hockey Writers and The Wrestling Observer.
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#1 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 10:03AM
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IMO, Wotherspoon sort of has an inside track on a roster spot with all these offensive defensemen around. Someone has to be able to play defense (1 reason why the Pouliot cut should surprise exactly nobody).

Related: what kind of player is Corrado? I know basically nothing at all about him, aside from being a Canucks pick. He has a right shot, so if he's a stay-at-home guy, he might make a good partner on the shutdown pair with Harrington. Plus, he has 2 goals at camp.

however, if he's an offensive defenseman, he's probably in the next round of cuts.

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#2 Kent Wilson
December 13 2012, 10:25AM
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@Baalzamon

Canucks Army talked about him today: http://canucksarmy.com/2012/12/13/will-frank-corrado-make-the-canadian-wjc-team-this-evening

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#3 FireOnIce
December 13 2012, 11:43AM
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What's the deal with Team Canada losing to the U of A team? Why isn't the U of A team just suiting up and going to play for us?

That aside, I thought Malcolm Subban was supposed to be a good player. Hell, Boston picked him in the first round of the draft and then signed him a month or two later.

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#4 Kent Wilson
December 13 2012, 11:49AM
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@FireOnIce

Well, keep in mind this is Team Canada's U-20 junior team and the College club probably contains mostly 20-and older guys.

That's the primary reason college leagues are more difficult than junior leagues.

As for Subban, he has had a great season in the OHL thus far. 26 games, .932 SV%.

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#5 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 02:09PM
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@FireOnIce

also, the Golden Bears (isn't that logo just the worst?) had Brossoit and Paterson in net.

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#6 Kent Wilson
December 13 2012, 04:39PM
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Brossoit got cut today, surprisingly. Corrado gone too.

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#7 danglesnipecelly
December 13 2012, 04:55PM
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WTF, 2 GOALS ON 50 SHOTS AND HE GETS CUT?

Is there a personality conflict, is he bad in the room, I don't understand... Subban looked terrible. This couldn't make less sense to me I thought Brossoit would start... at the very least back up the starter.

Crazy. Now I'm REALLY going for team USA!

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#8 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 04:58PM
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@Kent Wilson

Brossoit's a Flames prospect, he can't possibly be good.

On a serious note, him being the only goalie to get cut makes no sense at all. He faced by far the most shots in camp and had the best sv%.

I've been saying since September that Subban will be the starter regardless of whether he earns it or not. I had no idea I had premonitions.

Corrado makes no sense either, at least in terms of being cut before Dumba. As usual, big names get the nod over performance in team Canada. Nothing new here.

I was, though, glad to see McNeill among the cuts. I've never been a fan, he's never impressed me in any way, and he's been pretty much a complete flop ever since he was drafted as far as a supposed high-end prospect is concerned.

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#9 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 04:59PM
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@Baalzamon

"and had the best sv%"

*2nd best

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#10 Kent Wilson
December 13 2012, 05:07PM
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@Baalzamon

Yeah McNeill has essentially run in place since he was drafted. His results were good for a 17/18 year old but are now underwhelming two years hence. That was kinda the story with Greg Nemisz in junior as well.

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#11 Charleston Kingsley
December 13 2012, 05:41PM
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Wotherspoon made it but not Brossoit? Brossoit should've made the team. Well, at least one of our prospects made it, not the outcome I anticipated but it's going to be interesting to see what Wotherspoon can do.

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#13 McRib
December 13 2012, 06:10PM
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Malcolm Subban IMO is beyond overrated the dozen or so times I have seen him he has let in a soft goal or two (Brutal Five Hole), much like in this camp. He also holds out his glove hand awkwardly and any good shooters beats him high glove side.

He has good numbers with Belleville but their back up Charlie Graham has even better numbers(Save% 0.935% GAA 2.08) a seventeen year old nobody, who wasn't even good enough to be ranked Top Six Goalie Prospects for NHL Central Scouting just in the OHL... Belleville plays in hands down the easiest division in the OHL and they just wear teams down with defensive systems and he just pads his stats.

Honestly the family story is an interesting one coming from a less fortunate area in Toronto but its getting old. P.K Subban if possible is even more overrated. Montreal will not even sign him for four million because he has become so big headed and is not worth it. Yet he is on Sportsnet during the lockout and is the face of Nike...... HE FINISHED 28th in defensive scoring last season. Laurent Brossoit did not make this team because OHL coach took three OHL netminders that he knew. Good old Hockey Canada and their politics, because Brossoit was hands down the best goalie in camp.

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#14 McRib
December 13 2012, 06:20PM
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Congrats to Tyler Wotherspoon but it actually doesn't surprise me. When he was named to the Selection Camp Roster it made sense. As Hockey Canada loooovvvveeeessss Defensive Defenders. Almost as much as the Calgary Flames do.... Haha. Someday it would be nice to take an offensive defender or even a Two-Way defender.... At least we are taking Offensive Forwards again for the first time in a decade... Baby Steps.

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#15 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 06:43PM
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@McRib

"As Hockey Canada loooovvvveeeessss Defensive Defenders"

Dougie Hamilton, Ryan Murphy, Morgan Rielly, Xavier Ouellet.

They do? They now have 3(out of 7) defensive defenders (Harrington, Reinhart, Wotherspoon) 1 of which will be a healthy scratch.

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#16 Craig
December 13 2012, 06:43PM
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@McRib

TJ Brodie.

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#17 SmellOfVictory
December 13 2012, 06:46PM
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Brossoit was the best goalie in camp maybe, but he certainly wasn't the best leading up to it. There may be some politics involved, but they could've taken other factors into consideration as well.

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#18 Baalzamon
December 13 2012, 06:55PM
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@SmellOfVictory

there were. An article on the Flames website stated that Brossoit was told his camp wasn't the reason he was cut. That he did everything he needed to do.

My response to that is, if that's the case, why was he invited to camp in the first place? If that performance doesn't get him a spot on the roster, what was the point of bringing him in at all?

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#19 loudogYYC
December 13 2012, 08:19PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

there were. An article on the Flames website stated that Brossoit was told his camp wasn't the reason he was cut. That he did everything he needed to do.

My response to that is, if that's the case, why was he invited to camp in the first place? If that performance doesn't get him a spot on the roster, what was the point of bringing him in at all?

Probably to compare him to the the alternative. If Paterson had bombed, Brossoit would be in.

No surprise Dumba got cut, he looks sharp in practice but seems to struggle when the game is on. Too small and not fast or tough enough.

I may be going on a limb here, but Wotherspoon impressed me more than Reinhart did. I thought he was better at anticipating the play, moving around the ice and had quicker feet.

Maybe I'm just being biased, but TSpoon looked great!

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#20 negrilcowboy
December 13 2012, 08:46PM
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yo mcrib, papa subban is a laurentian university grad who teaches school. in ontario school teachers let alone principles are very very well compensated and plenty of that ilk earn in excess of 100 g's a year. principles top those wages. i guess those types of stories don't make good reads. glad to see politics is alive and well at the junior selections.

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#21 Sincity1976
December 13 2012, 08:54PM
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Keeping Brossoit as the third string would have killed the Edmonton Oil Kings for very little benefit for team Canada. I don't know if that had something to do with it. But I for one am glad he got cut. I would rather see him play.

Grats to Wotherspoon. He is a prospect not really on my 'good feeling' radar. But making camp over players like Dumba and Corrado is a pleasant surprise. Lets see how he does on the world stage.

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#22 Kent Wilson
December 13 2012, 09:09PM
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Somewhat related, Dumba has had a mighty unspectacular season coming off of his draft year. He was talked about as one of the best defenders available for awhile last year, but he hasn't been terribly impressive so far in 2012-13.

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#23 BurningSensation
December 13 2012, 09:35PM
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I thought Hunter Shinkaruk got a bit of a raw deal too.

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#24 KetchupKid
December 13 2012, 09:37PM
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@loudogYYC

TSpoon is the new best nickname in all of professional sports. I wish I thought of it.

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#25 T&A4Flames
December 13 2012, 09:56PM
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Sincity1976 wrote:

Keeping Brossoit as the third string would have killed the Edmonton Oil Kings for very little benefit for team Canada. I don't know if that had something to do with it. But I for one am glad he got cut. I would rather see him play.

Grats to Wotherspoon. He is a prospect not really on my 'good feeling' radar. But making camp over players like Dumba and Corrado is a pleasant surprise. Lets see how he does on the world stage.

I agree with you on the "rather see him play" part. But, I think that at some point, and it may come quick, Subban is going to flop and Broissoit would have been the best guy to take over as he has the only big game experience.

Also, the Oil Kings have Tristan Jarry. He's a pretty solid goaltender.

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#26 theCalgaryJames
December 13 2012, 10:00PM
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loudogYYC wrote:

Probably to compare him to the the alternative. If Paterson had bombed, Brossoit would be in.

No surprise Dumba got cut, he looks sharp in practice but seems to struggle when the game is on. Too small and not fast or tough enough.

I may be going on a limb here, but Wotherspoon impressed me more than Reinhart did. I thought he was better at anticipating the play, moving around the ice and had quicker feet.

Maybe I'm just being biased, but TSpoon looked great!

bottom line is Brossoit and Paterson were auditioning for the same role. Subban and Binnington were gonna be the no. 1 and no. 2 either way based on Spott's familiarity with them from the OHL. I don't think it's politics as much as its just a coach going with what he knows and what he knows is what he's seen from these guys over the course of this season and last.

Say what you will about Subban but he's been VERY good this season as well as in the Subway series last summer. Binnington and Brossoit have virtually identical resumes to this point so, at the end of the day, the coach went with the guy he knows and decided it didn't make sense to have Brossoit as the #3 who probably wont even suit up.

When it all boils down I think you measure who 'gains' more as a 3rd goalie, sitting in the stands in Russia? Not Brossoit. This way Paterson (who I really believe had the best camp of all 4 goalies) gets the experience of heading to the tournament and possibly taking the #1 spot next year. It just makes sense. I'd rather Brossoit was playing meaningful hockey than warming a bench in Ufa.

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#27 theCalgaryJames
December 13 2012, 10:14PM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

I agree with you on the "rather see him play" part. But, I think that at some point, and it may come quick, Subban is going to flop and Broissoit would have been the best guy to take over as he has the only big game experience.

Also, the Oil Kings have Tristan Jarry. He's a pretty solid goaltender.

implying that Binnington has no 'Big game experience' is just innacurate. I would argue that with his OHL championship season and subsequent birth in the Memorial Cup he has as much experience as Brossoit.

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#28 RexLibris
December 13 2012, 10:33PM
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My take on this, and echoing SinCity1976, is that Brossoit was cut in part because, based on some of the things I've heard recently, Spott may have felt Brossoit had nothing to gain by sitting as the 3rd string, and also that if anything happened to Jarry, it would have left the Oil Kings in a very bad spot.

Anyone take a look recently at the names of goaltenders who were cut by Team Canada in past years? Nothing to get too worried about here.

As for Dumba, don't tell DSF over at ON. He has some preferences for many of the Wild's prospects.

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#29 Kevin R
December 13 2012, 10:50PM
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Still think Brossoit should have been there. There truly is some BS going on there. In the long run, maybe this could be the best thing for this kid & his future development. It was probably like a kick in the crotch with a steel toed boot to him, but the ole saying, no pain no gain. On the flip side, for Tspoon to make it is a huge confidence builder in him & greater fan expectation now. That is usually a very good mix. Silver lining, if one prospect of the Flames couldnt make it, this was the best scenario.

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#30 loudogYYC
December 13 2012, 11:40PM
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KetchupKid wrote:

TSpoon is the new best nickname in all of professional sports. I wish I thought of it.

I wish I thought of it too. I got it from his twitter handle @TSPOON77

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