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Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Could two Flames prospects be headed to the Olympics?

The annual World Junior Hockey Championships have been completed, with Canada capturing the gold medal. Now that the tournament is out of the way, the international hockey world turns its attention to the Winter Olympics next month in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The United States has announced their roster, but might need some injury replacements. Canada is expected to announce their roster next week. Could a Calgary Flames prospect, or two, make their way to the Olympics?

Dillon Dube

Earlier this week, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman discussed Canada’s Spengler Cup win and the inclusion of college players in the American Olympic roster. From 31 Thoughts:

13. That brings us to the juniors. Team USA has four NCAA players on the roster: Will Borgen (St. Cloud State), Ryan Donato (Harvard), Jordan Greenway (Boston University) and Troy Terry (Denver). It’s not going to be a good look if Canada doesn’t get similar help. To be fair, one junior executive said they want to make sure any player who goes has a role, and it’s not time wasted. That’s not unreasonable, especially since they will be competing against men on an international ice surface.

So, the question becomes: who can do it? I put the question to three NHL amateur scouts/executives who are at the event. One picked Cale Makar as a power-play specialist, although he added that Makar is still very young and hasn’t faced a ton of elite competition. The second took Jordan Kyrou, with the possibility of Dillon Dube in a smaller, energy role. The third chose Victor Mete, although you wonder if Mete’s injury clouds all this.

Earlier this week, the Canadian Hockey League confirmed to The Hockey News’ Ken Campbell that juniors can go to the Olympics. Reportedly, there are five roster sports still being mulled over by Hockey Canada’s management group – and some of those spots may be juniors.

If Team Canada will include some teens, who better than Dube? A versatile forward who just captained Team Canada to a gold medal, he’s represented Canada on three occasions at big events and has been extensively scouted for said events by Hockey Canada. He’s a reliable, useful player, and at this point Canada’s management team probably has a pretty strong handle on him as a player.

Adam Fox

Fox was not named to USA Hockey’s Olympic roster last week, but an injury to blueliner Ryan Gunderson in Europe may open the door for him.

In the event that Gunderson’s not good to go to South Korea, Fox could work – though he’s less of a slam dunk fit than Dube. He’s a right shot while Gunderson is a leftie, and five of the eight defenders on the American roster are already righties. There may also be some concern on the Harvard side at losing both leading scorer Ryan Donato and Fox to the Olympics, as they’d lose their two best players for the latter parts of their conference’s season. But like Dube, he’s a well-known commodity in USA Hockey circles – two seasons in the vaunted National Development Program and he’s four medals for the USA at international tournaments over the past four seasons.

  • The GREAT WW

    Fun fact:

    As a 19 year old playing for the Kelowna Rockets; Dube has played 27 games with 18 goals and 21 assists.

    As a 19 year old Backlund also played for the Kelowna Rockets; in 28 games he had 12 goals and 18 assists.

    (Dube coming back from a serious injury…..Backlund new to the country…)

    WW

        • BendingCorners

          Might be too much from a cap perspective but not from a market perspective. Our only C of note in the pipeline is Dube, neither he nor Jankowski will be ready to replace Backlund anytime soon.
          These are the horses we’ve got, so we ride them and we pay them.

          • Chucky

            Gawdin at 1.87 points per game and Phillips at 1.49 points per game aren’t worthy of note? Gawdin is 20 so not eligible for the WJC why Phillips was not invited was a mystery.

          • freethe flames

            Chucky brings up Phillips and Gawdin as other centers. Here’s my perspective on them: Phillips will likely be converted to the wing; his size will likely impact his ability to be a center in the NHL. Gawdin is an overager who is likely going to be good AHLer and turn into a tweener.

  • buts

    I would love to see a local kid named Matt Robinson who is a KHL all star get a chance to play for Canada. Are KHL players allowed? Off the subject…..a press conference was planned yesterday with the podium set up at the saddledome then nothing was announced…..they don’t set up the podium to announce that Jagr is “day to day”. There was something else going on that was either cancelled or delayed….does any FN writer or commenter have any idea what was to be announced? I was hoping that an interim coaching staff was going to be announced along with plans for a new arena and football stadium fieldhouse 🙂

    • The GREAT WW

      I think GG’s time was up…..but was saved by the players in the second round…….

      Only to be repeatedly sworn at by GG at practice……

      “Have you looked at the F-big standings?”
      As if he has no blame for that himself…..

      WW

    • freethe flames

      I’m wondering if they are waiting on a number of specialist reports on Jagr’s injury before making a final decision. And by they I think both the team and Jagr.

      • oilcanboyd

        ..or Jags had second thoughts about throwing in the towel, with the Flames letting him know that they would be okay if he took the rest of January off to heal…..or a trade was in the offing but hit a snag…or he wants to go to the Olympics….or just speculation on everything!

  • Off the wall

    BTF 2, give it a rest will ya.
    I’m getting sick of your self righteousness on here.

    Why don’t you leave? Go join your friends over on Oil Nation.
    We won’t miss you.

      • Ari Yanover

        I gotta be honest I’m typically not around in the mornings(/am significantly less inclined to read the comments when 90% of them are some variation of calling for the coach to be fired) and have no idea what happened. Any recent post deletions or bannings haven’t been me.

        • Skylardog

          It concerns me that you find the comments so one sided these days and avoid it as a result. I am sorry for that. It is my opinion that several of us have been very influential in changing the views of the fans on this site with logical and solid arguments.

          The funny thing is that recently, you seem just a mad as the rest of us at how the Flames are playing. Your patience for how they play (at least from a results standpoint) seems to be quite short these days.

          The only difference is that we have been pointing the finger as to who the problem is on here, while the writers are very reluctant to go down that road.

          It is time for one of the author’s on here to take a serious critical look at the coach and publish something other than Corsi looks good and the process is working.

          May I suggest you start with questioning why he was hired in the first place based on his record as a head coach in Dallas when compared to the year before he arrived and the year after he left.

  • Parallex

    I took it as a commentary on the labals applied to black hockey players (hence the “or are we a bunch of racist a-holes”).

    Regardless, you shouldn’t spam other threads. Click the “Contact Us” button.

  • JoelOttosJock

    The olympics are going to be a joke for hockey. 3rd/4th rate players. Anyone who watched the Spengler Cup knows what I am talking about. It will be like watching the CFL compared to the NFL.

  • BringtheFire 2.0

    “No kidding; Fischer would be a great pick up! But he is not exactly seen as a bust now, is he?

    Question:
    Why is it that every time a black player comes up for trade, he always has “personal issues”….?

    Are black hockey players a-holes?
    Or are we all a bunch of racist a-holes…?

    (Asking for a friend…)

    WW”

  • Cheeky

    As much as the talent is obviously less without NHL players, I’m actually looking forward to Olympic hockey. Gives a chance to lesser unknowns and college kids without the usual favortism of players making the team based on what they did in the past rather than the present…would love to see any of our prospects get a chance in the Olympics, or perhaps someone might pop out than we sign after (I’m not talking about Iggy or Raymond, more of a college free agent)…