A brief history of the Calgary Flames at the World Juniors
Photo credit:Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
By Ryan Pike5 months ago
It’s the most wonderful time of the year: the annual IIHF World Junior Championship! The event pits the best under-20 national teams against each other, and often features some of the game’s best and brightest stars.
As you might expect, this event has had a serious Calgary Flames flavour over the years. Here’s a look back at how Flames prospects and current players have been involved.
Last five tournaments
The Flames have had a lot of prospects represent them at the last five World Junior events – at least one per tournament. And some of them have even gone on to sign with the Flames!
- 2022 (both winter and summer): Matt Coronato (United States)
- 2021: Connor Zary & Jakob Pelletier (Canada, winning silver), Dustin Wolf (United States, winning gold), Yan Kuznetsov (Russia)
- 2020: Dustin Wolf (United States)
- 2019: Adam Ruzicka, Martin Pospisil & Milos Roman (Slovakia), Filip Sveningsson (Sweden)
- 2018: Dillon Dube (Canada, winning gold), Juuso Valimaki & Eetu Tuulola (Finland), Adam Ruzicka (Slovakia), Linus Lindstrom (Sweden)
The 2021 event took place in a bubble in Edmonton, and was punctuated by an awkward car ride south to Flames training camp: goaltending coach Jason LaBarbera and prospects Pelletier and Zary only received silver medals because Canada lost to the United States… which featured backup goalie Wolf, who wore his gold medal around his neck for the three hour drive to Calgary.
Current Flames at past World Juniors
A lot of current Flames have played in the World Junior tournament. Let’s break them down, bundled by country.
Canada: Nazem Kadri played at the 2010 event, winning silver. Jonathan Huberdeau played at the 2012 and 2013 events, winning bronze in 2012. Brett Ritchie was his teammate in 2013. Dillon Dube played at the 2017 and 2018 events, winning silver (2017) and gold (2018).
United States: Trevor Lewis played at the 2007 tournament (winning bronze), Noah Hanifin played at the 2015 event.
Sweden: Mikael Backlund played at the 2008 and 2009 event, capturing silver each time. Jacob Markstrom played at the 2009 and 2010 tournaments, capturing silver (2009) and bronze (2010). Elias Lindholm played at the 2013 and 2014 WJCs, also capturing silver each time. Oliver Kylington played at the 2017 event.
Russia: Nikita Zadorov played at the 2014 World Juniors, capturing bronze.
Czechia: Dan Vladar was on the World Junior roster for three World Juniors – 2015, 2016 and 2017. He played games in 2017.
Slovakia: Adam Ruzicka played in three World Juniors – 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Aside from Canada, which country are you most excited to watch at the World Juniors? Let us know in the comments!
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