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08-01-2013, 02:15 PM
RangerBoy's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: New York
Country: United States
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US WJC camp starts on Saturday

Brady Skjei (Univ. of Minnesota) USA Blue Though his own head coach will be leading Team USA, Skjei cant be counted a lock just yet. He was in the mix for last years team, but was one of the late cuts. Skjei showed improvement over the course of his freshman season at Minnesota, which got off to a bit of a rocky start. If he took another step forward this year, I think hed be an easy pick for the team, but we wont know until he gets out there in Lake Placid. Skjei is one of the best skaters in camp and utilizes the bigger ice well. He has enough offense to contribute a few points here and there (even though it never really materialized at Minnesota last year), but is probably better in his own end. I think hell be watched very closely throughout the camp and the first half of the year. If he can play at his best, Skjei brings a skill set the team will need to try and defend the gold medal at the WJC. Hes the type of guy the USA staff will give every opportunity to make the team. As some added pressure, Skjei is the only defenseman to have been a first-round selection at the NHL Draft camping with the U.S. New York Rangers (2012, 1st Rd., 28th overall)

Christoval Boo Nieves (Univ. of Michigan) USA White With the way his freshman season went at Michigan, I think Nieves showed he made the right choice when he picked schools. Having split the previous season between prep school and the USHL, he really developed a ton over the course of the last season and I think hell seriously push for a spot in Malmo. He showed more of a willingness to pay the price for offense, put on a bunch of muscle to his 6-foot-3 frame and still has some really strong puck skills. Gone are the knocks that he was only a perimeter player and now hes looking like a quality prospect. He posted 21 assists in a tough season for Michigan and very well could be a top-six playmaking winger for this junior team. Nieves, who has Ivan Hlinka experience, has to show in camp what he did in the latter half of his freshman campaign. If he does that, hell quickly become a favorite to claim a spot on the squad. New York Rangers (2012, 2nd Rd., 59th overall)

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