Hockey Canada Releases Under-18 Invites

Hockey Canada

The 2020 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, the precursor to the 2021 National Hockey League Draft, was cancelled because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, but that didn’t stop Hockey Canada from naming the 46 players that would have been invited to the selection camp.

Hockey Canada released that list today and it includes 12 Ontario Hockey League players with a possible 13th, depending on whether goaltender Matteo Drobac makes the Hamilton Bulldogs roster when the 2020-2021 season takes place.

Five of the six players on our Players to Watch List  have made the cut with Russian Daniil Chayka the only exception, so of course, he’s not eligible.

Here is the full list of invites by Hockey Canada:

Name Ht. Wt. Club Team NHL Draft
Goaltenders
Tyler Brennan 6’3” 187 Prince George (WHL) 2022
Matteo Drobac 6’1” 170 Hamilton (GOJHL) 2021
Benjamin Gaudreau 6’2″ 165 Sarnia (OHL) 2021
Jacob Goobie 5’10” 178 Charlottetown (QMJHL) 2021
Thomas Milic 5’11” 155 Burnaby Winter Club (CSSHL) 2021
William Rousseau 6’10” 170 Trois-Rivières (LHMAAAQ) 2021
Defence
Nolan Allan 6’2″ 185 Prince Albert (WHL) 2021
Olivier Boutin 5’10” 160 Gatineau (QMJHL) 2021
Corson Ceulemans 6’2″ 190 Brooks (AJHL) 2021
Brandt Clarke 6’1″ 181 Barrie (OHL) 2021
Jacob Holmes 6’1″ 174 Sault Ste. Marie (OHL) 2021
Carson Lambos 6’1″ 200 Winnipeg (WHL) 2021
Jérémy Langlois Cape Breton (QMJHL) 2022
Kyle Masters 5’11” 159 Red Deer (WHL) 2021
Evan Nause 6’1″ 172 Sioux Falls (USHL) 2021
Oscar Plandowski 5’11” 175 Charlottetown (QMJHL) 2021
Guillaume Richard 6’0″ 148 Mount St. Charles Academy (USU16) 2021
Graham Sward 6’2″ 170 Spokane (WHL) 2021
Cameron Whynot 6’1″ 168 Halifax (QMJHL) 2021
Olen Zellweger 5’9″ 165 Everett (WHL) 2021
Forwards
Liam Arnsby 5’10” 172 North Bay (OHL) 2022
Zachary Bolduc 6’0″ 172 Rimouski (QMJHL) 2021
Zach Dean 5’9″ 166 Gatineau (QMJHL) 2021
Nathan Gaucher 6’3″ 186 Quebec (QMJHL) 2022
Dylan Guenther 6’1″ 170 Edmonton (WHL) 2021
Brett Harrison 6’1″ 167 Oshawa (OHL) 2021
Cole Huckins 6’4″ 191 Acadie-Bathurst (QMJHL) 2021
Wyatt Johnston 6’0″ 167 Windsor (OHL) 2021
Riley Kidney 5’11” 160 Acadie-Bathurst (QMJHL) 2021
Zachary L’Heureux 5’10” 196 Moncton (QMJHL) 2021
Connor Lockhart 5’8″ 163 Erie (OHL) 2021
James Malatesta 5’9″ 172 Quebec (QMJHL) 2021
Mason McTavish 6’1″ 198 Peterborough (OHL) 2021
Olivier Nadeau 6’2″ 204 Shawinigan (QMJHL) 2021
Brennan Othmann 5’11” 165 Flint (OHL) 2021
Francesco Pinelli 6’0″ 182 Kitchener (OHL) 2021
Peter Reynolds 5’10” 165 Chilliwack (BCHL) 2021
Justin Robidas 5’7″ 173 Val-d’Or (QMJHL) 2021
Conner Roulette 5’11” 158 Seattle (WHL) 2021
Joshua Roy 6’0″ 191 Saint John (QMJHL) 2021
Cole Sillinger 6’0″ 187 Medicine Hat (WHL) 2021
Logan Stankoven 5’7″ 165 Kamloops (WHL) 2021
Chase Stillman 5’11” 170 Sudbury (OHL) 2021
Zach Stringer 6’1″ 165 Lethbridge (WHL) 2021
Dovar Tinling 5’11” 181 Hawkesbury (CCHL) 2021
Danny Zhilkin 6’0″ 185 Guelph (OHL) 2022

Early Look at the Ontario Hockey League’s 2021 Draft Eligible Players

The Ontario Hockey League draft class for the 2019 National Hockey League Draft was one of the worst ever. On the flip side, 2020 was one of the best classes to come out of the OHL. So, what’s in store for the 2021 Draft? At first glance, it’s a good class with some talented first round potential.

When the 2020-2021 season does begin, and that’s still a question on everyone’s mind because of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have produced a list of players that definitely are worth keeping an eye on.

In no particular order:

Brandt Clarke – Defenceman – Barrie Colts

Brandt Clarke of the Barrie Colts. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.With exceptional mobility and speed, Clarke is almost like a fourth forward when transitioning to offence and jumping up into the play. It should come as no surprise since he models his game after Erik Karlsson. He plays a very poised game, patient with the puck, and rarely turns it over. He has excellent hockey senses and is a superb passer. His defensive game showed marked improvement as the season progressed. He gets back quickly because of his skating, has good gat control and is effective with his stick. And he doesn’t shy away from the physicality and began to be the player who initiated contact rather then the receiver as the season went on. Clarke finished the season with 6 goals and 32 assists in 57 games and was named to the OHL First All-Rookie Team.  

 

Mason McTavish – Center – Peterborough Petes

Mason McTavish of the Peterborough Petes. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.The offensively talented McTavish led all 2003 born players in goals and points despite not always getting the best offensive opportunities with the Petes, moving up and down the lineup. He’s a puck possession beast, seemingly having the puck on a string. He’s not shy about going end-to-end, is patient with the puck and is very adept at creating space. He reads the play extremely well and is able to find soft spots undetected. He is willing to drive the net with or without the puck. McTavish is a pure sniper with a pro caliber shot and release already. He’s already physically strong and yet there is still room for more. He’s also a top player in the faceoff circle. McTavish finished the season with 29 goals and 13 assists in 57 games and was named to the OHL Second All-Rookie Team.

Francesco Pinelli – Left Wing – Kitchener Rangers

Francesco Pinelli of the Kitchener Rangers. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.At this point, it may not be a reach to say that Pinelli is the best two-way player out of the draft class and that ability coming straight from minor midget earned him the trust of the Rangers coaches. He’s a versatile player who can play both the wing and down the middle. He works hard from shift-to-shift and is not afraid to play a physical game. He has high hockey senses, is positionally sound and creates turnovers almost at will. He’s a strong skater with a unique ability to draw in defenders and make a perfect pass. He has a superb one-timer and can unleash it with accuracy and it is especially dangerous on the pp with space. He finished fourth among rookies with 18 goals and 23 assists in 59 games.

Brennan Othmann – Left Wing – Flint Firebirds

Brennan Othmann of the Flint Firebirds. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.When watching Othmann play, it’s obvious his deadliest asset is his shot. He possesses and excellent one-timer and a snap shot that is deadly accurate with a superb release. Maybe it was a lack of confidence in his abilities, but he just didn’t use that shot enough as he chose to dish off rather then take his shot. That said, he is a very good playmaker as well, so maybe he was reading something else on the ice. One might raise the question if it’s his hockey sense/vision that comes into play. However, I believe it’s just a question of confidence in his ability to beat goaltenders and with a year under his belt, those questions will be answered. Othmann finished the season with 17 goals and 16 assists in 55 games and was named to the OHL First All-Rookie Team.

Daniil Chayka – Defenceman – Guelph Storm

Danill Chayka of the Guelph Storm. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.With a late 2002 birth date, Chayka will be in his third OHL season come his draft year and the young Russian has already made a name for himself. He is a smooth skater, plays in all situations and eats up huge minutes. Chayka is a pass first defender but is more then willing to jump into the play on offence. He has a good shot from the point but doesn’t try to overpower goaltenders and shoots with a purpose. Defensively his size and skating make him hard to beat one-on-one. Even at a young age, Chayka has shown excellent leadership qualities. Chayka finished the season with 11 goals and 23 assists in 56 games. He was named to the 2018-2019 OHL Second All-Rookie Team.

Brett Harrison – Center – Oshawa Generals

Harrison carries a big body at 6’3” but filling in the frame is a requirement. He’s near impossible to knock off of the puck and uses excellent body and stick position to protect the disc. He is a technically strong skater with good speed and has the ability to change gears and challenge defenders one-on-one. He is dynamite on his edgework which is surprising for a player of his size. Harrison also has an excellent shot that he can release in a split second and he is very deceptive with small positional changes to improve his angle. Harrison finished the year with 21 goals and 16 assists in 58 games.

Chase Stillman – Wing – Sudbury Wolves

Chase Stillman of the Sudbury Wolves. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.While the attention in Sudbury was all on Quinton Byfield, Stillman quietly put up a very good rookie season. The son of former NHL’er Cory Stillman and younger brother of Riley, he comes from a family with hockey blood lines. He is a swift skater he has a high level of hockey smarts. Stillman is a coachable player – not because his father is a coach in Sudbury, he stayed with a billet family, but he took directions well from the older players. Expect Stillman to be one of the go-to guys for offence in Sudbury next season. He finished the year with 13 goals and 21 assists in 58 games. He was named to the OHL First All-Rookie Team.

Photos courtesy of OHL Images