If the World Under-20 Championships were to start today, there is a good chance that the New York Rangers would not have any of their prospects on the team. Ethan Werek (2009 2nd) is doing his best to change that though and we hope Team Canada gives him a chance to earn a spot.
As we talked about yesterday Werek has caught fire as of late with a 7-4-11 run in his last 6 straight OHL games. Werek has almost doubled his season numbers over the last 2 weeks and is now on a pace to score 47 goals this season if he stays healthy.
Werek was named to the Team OHL roster for just one of the two games in the Subway Super Series as these rosters were set before Werek got hot. They are important because Hockey Canada uses the 6 games played among the 3 Canadian Junior Leagues to decide who earns an invite to the final evaluation camp for the World Under-20s.
Since Werek did not get an invite to the first camp his chances of earning a roster spot or camp invite in all honesty are slim at best. It did not help Werek that last season he was playing on a weak Kingston team but Werek has been a key part of this season's turnaround and hopefully that will be taken into account.
Werek did not play badly against Team Russia as Werek got a primary assist on Taylor Beck's power play goal at 9:06 of the second period. The goal tied the score at 2-2 as Team OHL went on to win 5-2.
If Werek does not make it to Hockey Canada's roster this year then we fully expect him to be a part of it next year. Werek now returns back to his Kingston Frontenacs as they host the Kitchener Rangers on Friday.
It will be interesting to see how well Werek handles 3 games in 3 nights.
In other action, Danny Hobbs (2007 7th) and his 11th ranked UMass Minutemen continued their surprising season by
defeating 9th ranked Yale in a non-conference matchup 4-3 in overtime.
Hobbs had a quiet evening not scoring or even getting off any shots but played another solid game for the Minutemen. It is a huge turnaround for Hobbs from his freshman season where he spent half the season as a healthy scratch.
This season Hobbs has played in every game with a 1-4-5 stat count in 10 games. Hobbs has worked his way up the depth chart to where he has been used as mainly as the 2nd line left wing.
We do see though where his coach Don Cahoon is wanting to see Hobbs show more confidence in his offensive game. Hobbs averages under 2 shots a game and we know him from his days with the Columbus Junior Bluejackets so he should be shooting the puck a lot more than he has been.
It would be nice to see Hobbs continue to improve as he is a very really good young man who is majoring in legal studies.
(Werek courtesy of OHL Images/Aaron Bell, Hobbs courtesy of Dennis Peace)
5 hours ago