The 2021 World Juniors Championship is set to take place next month in Edmonton, Alberta and Team USA is starting to take shape. USA Hockey announced the preliminary roster for the tournament, comprised of 29 players, who will participate in a selection camp in Plymouth, Mich. starting on Dec. 6. The final roster will be announced on Dec. 13.
Among the 17 forwards are two Los Angeles Kings prospects, along with one of the nine defenders.
Arthur Kaliyev is one of 10 returning players from last year’s U20 squad. Kaliyev was selected in the second round of the 2019 NHL Draft out of the OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs and is one of just three players on the selection roster without any NCAA experience. In last year’s tournament, he provided four goals and two assists in five games.
Alex Turcotte is another 2019 Draftee (fifth overall) and 2020 Team USA alum, where he tallied two assists. He is currently on loan to the German Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL), whose season is set to begin on Dec. 17, 2020. Last season, he played for the University of Wisconsin Badgers hockey program, signing with the Kings in March after their season ended.
On the back end is Brock Faber, a University of Minnesota defender who is also a product of the US National Team Development Program. He was a second-round pick by the Kings in 2020 and he recently scored his first NCAA goal with the Golden Gophers, who are undefeated in their season so far.
“We have a talented group and we’ll have some tough decisions to make,” said John Vanbiesbrouck, general manager of the 2021 U.S. National Junior Team and assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey in a release. “We continue to benefit from a deep player pool, and that’s credit to all of the organizations and volunteers developing the next wave of American talent.”
Fourteen different states are represented on the preliminary roster and 26 of the 29 players have college hockey experience. They will need to make four cuts before the tournament, which will take place “bubble style” in Edmonton from Dec. 25, 2020 – Jan. 5, 2021.
Last year, Team USA finished sixth, following a four-year streak of top-three performances. They last won Gold at World Juniors in 2017, having also won it in 2004, 2010 and 2013.
Here’s the full selection camp roster: