Hockey Canada has announced the roster for Canada’s National Men’s Summer U18 selection camp.
Forty-four players will hope to crack the roster for Team Canada to compete at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup in Red Deer.
The selection camp will take place at the Markin MacPhail Centre in Calgary July 20-23 with four goalies, 14 defenceman, and 26 forwards competing for a spot. The final roster, which will be confirmed on July 24, will then play games against red and white teams from Canada’s National Junior Team camp before the start of the Hlinka Gretzky Cup in Red Deer from July 31 to Aug. 6.
Among the players chosen for the U18 selection camp is Red Deer Rebels forward Kalan Lind. The Shaunavon, Sask. product scored 20 goals for 38 points in 61 games for the Rebels last season. He also led the team with 93 penalty minutes.
Lind told the Advocate it was pretty cool to receive the call from Hockey Canada and be named to the camp roster.
“Kind of got little tears of joy which is kind of an unbelievable moment you know you’ve been working for it all year, all summer, and then get the call and that was pretty relieving and kind of got some stress off my shoulders. Now it’s time to go to work and prove that I’m supposed to be there,” Lind said.
This is not Lind’s first time being selected to a Team Canada camp. Last year he was invited to compete for a spot in the U17 Capital City Challenge in Ottawa. He helped Team White win the bronze medal scoring three times and one assist in five games. The tournament had four teams including three teams of the top under-17 players in the country and the women’s national team.
“Every kid’s hockey dream is either playing on that world junior team and this is another step in the road or the Olympic team. I think just getting to represent your country, in general, is just a pretty cool experience all around,” he added.
Lind hopes to do his best and play his game during the selection camp and try to prove he belongs on Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 squad. Overall, he was satisfied with his most recent WHL season with the Rebels but felt like he had a slow start. Once he got in his groove his season took off from there which in turn resulted in a Team Canada invite.
If he does make the squad, Lind will play in the place he calls home during the WHL season at the Peavey Mart Centrium where he will experience a familiar Red Deer crowd.
“It’s going to be awesome. Hopefully, I’m there and It’s a pretty cool experience to be playing there,” he said adding the Rebels faithful were incredible last season and electric in the playoffs.
”I’ve played there for two years now It’s kind of like my second home. It’s going to be cool to play out there in front of some of the fans we get at the Rebels games and just to be able to be in the city again It’s going to be a cool experience,”
Also on the camp roster from central Alberta is goaltender Scott Ratzlaff from Irma. Last season he played for the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds.