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TSN: Aulie and Myers Give Canada Plenty of Size

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12-29-2008, 02:43 AM
  #1
Split98
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TSN: Aulie and Myers Give Canada Plenty of Size

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It's a first for Team Canada defenceman Keith Aulie.

At 6'6, he's generally been identified as the tallest player on his team. But on this year's squad at the World Junior Hockey Championship, he's shorter than his defensive partner who just happens to be 6'7 and a half - Tyler Myers.

"I don't think I've ever had to look up at someone on my own team," said Aulie with a smile. "It's kind of funny looking at how big we are back there."

Rarely has such a defensive tandem brought such a height advantage. Together, they have formed Team Canada's 'Twin Towers' and their size wreaks havoc on their opposing forwards.

"It definitely helps out in different ways," Aulie told TSN on Saturday. "That extra reach for the puck comes in handy against small, shifty forwards. I think European teams coming in here and seeing our size can worry (about our size) a little, but at the same time you still have to be a good player and be able to skate and hold the puck."

In addition to their size, both Aulie and Myers are also good, well-rounded athletes. Aulie won a Saskatchewan provincial high school volleyball championship, while Myers - born in Texas - played basketball, soccer and baseball before falling in love with hockey.

And at this year's World Juniors, the smaller North American ice plays to their size advantage.

Of course, standing tall does bring about a few nicknames. While Aulie has been called 'High Tower' (a reference to the Police Academy movies) by his teammates back in Brandon, Myers is often dubbed 'Big Slim'.

But so far, the Twins Towers reference seems to work for this duo the same way it did for Tim Duncan and David Robinson of the San Antonio Spurs, and - who could forget - pro wrestling's infamous tag-team duo of Big Bossman and Akeem from the 1980's.

"I heard it quite a bit since we've been paired together at camp," said Myers. "I like it and I hope it sticks."

Aulie, a Calgary Flames draft pick who plays for the WHL's Brandon Wheat Kings, and Tyler Myers, the Kelowna Rockets blueliner whose rights belong to the Buffalo Sabres, have shown good chemistry for Canada's defence over a short period of time.

And they will be called upon to provide that physical spark when opponents push their teammates around. Nowhere will that be more evident than on New Year's Eve when Canada takes on the United States.

"Two big kids like that can cover a lot of territory," said head coach Pat Quinn. "They're certainly imposing and both are mobile. There are lots of assets there and as they go forward they could have some nice careers in front of them."

But for now, their focus remains on the World Junior Hockey Championship and helping Canada win its fifth straight gold medal. And so far, the duo has shown that size does matter.

Written with files from TSN's James Cybulski.
http://tsn.ca/world_jrs/story/?id=26...ines_world_jrs

Going to be really interesting to see a Phaneuf/Aulie combo in the near future. That... Regehr/Aulie? This kid is designed to slot in with either of our top 2 (size for Phaneuf... and shutdown for Regehr). Can we play him now already?

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12-29-2008, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Split98 View Post
http://tsn.ca/world_jrs/story/?id=26...ines_world_jrs

Going to be really interesting to see a Phaneuf/Aulie combo in the near future. That... Regehr/Aulie? This kid is designed to slot in with either of our top 2 (size for Phaneuf... and shutdown for Regehr). Can we play him now already?
Lol but agreed. It would be great if we can start slotting in some of the prospects onto thye team next year as there are spaces (Aucoin is a UFA and expensive) to help resign guys like Boyd and Cammy cap wise. Great to see Aulie and Backlund having a great start to the tourney. Seeing Aulie and Regehr and Sarich would bode well for the shut down side of the back end.

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12-29-2008, 11:59 AM
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Its great to hear about Aulie. Man are the Flames ever boasting some prospective defensive depth.

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12-29-2008, 12:41 PM
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Phaneuf - Aulie.

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12-29-2008, 01:18 PM
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I hope he can make the team next year, the faster we get our defensive prospects NHL experience, the better... so that we can start to position ourselves as one of the dominant teams in the NHL before the core's contracts come up after 2011-2012.

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12-29-2008, 01:25 PM
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Good god people... Aulie is not NHL ready... he WILL NOT be with the team next year... you guys sound like you did about Negrin this summer... Aucoin is a UFA and its much more likely that Pardy will got a shot to play everyday or Sutter signs someone than any of our prospects jumping up to play a regular NHL shift... but if any prospect is to make the big club one would think Negrin, Wilson and Pelech have a better chance than Aulie... although I think the only prospects that could get a legit shot next year are Backlund, Keetley & Chucko (who I think will get a call-up sometime this season for a few games)

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12-29-2008, 03:23 PM
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Good god people... Aulie is not NHL ready... he WILL NOT be with the team next year... you guys sound like you did about Negrin this summer... Aucoin is a UFA and its much more likely that Pardy will got a shot to play everyday or Sutter signs someone than any of our prospects jumping up to play a regular NHL shift... but if any prospect is to make the big club one would think Negrin, Wilson and Pelech have a better chance than Aulie... although I think the only prospects that could get a legit shot next year are Backlund, Keetley & Chucko (who I think will get a call-up sometime this season for a few games)
He's not really a prospect I guess, but I wonder if Greentree might get the call before Chucko? I dunno, seems like he could be a David Moss type to me.

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12-29-2008, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Lunatik View Post
Good god people... Aulie is not NHL ready... he WILL NOT be with the team next year... you guys sound like you did about Negrin this summer... Aucoin is a UFA and its much more likely that Pardy will got a shot to play everyday or Sutter signs someone than any of our prospects jumping up to play a regular NHL shift... but if any prospect is to make the big club one would think Negrin, Wilson and Pelech have a better chance than Aulie... although I think the only prospects that could get a legit shot next year are Backlund, Keetley & Chucko (who I think will get a call-up sometime this season for a few games)
Lighten up Lunatik . Ideally we will have more than one prospec on D that might be ready, all depends on their development and what kind of camp they have of course. This is months away but I think I mirror what several people have said in that the cupboard is starting to look more full than bare which is a nice change.

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12-29-2008, 06:21 PM
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I'm with Lunatik everyone needs to take a step back I think. I like the way Aulie has developed so far, but he isn't NHL ready and there are a couple of other guys ahead of him. Pelech will probably be ready next year and I think Negrin will be very close. Aulie is probably a guy that will need to play a year or two in the minors. Still has some maturing to do.

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12-30-2008, 04:10 AM
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Originally Posted by 49K View Post
Phaneuf - Aulie.
I was just thinking that tonight.
Anyone know if this kid can pass?

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01-01-2009, 12:06 AM
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he has impressed at the world juniors. i think he is very close to nhl ready. he is playing more than pieterangelo, who averaged 16 minutes a game in his 8 games with st.louis. it is tough to say when he will be nhl ready, like it is for all prospects, but i doubt he could step in full time next year, seeing how he has not even appeared in any exhibition games for Calgary. looking like another draft steal which is always good. i still think calgary needs to sign a d man in the offseason, but with aulie's play, it might only have to be a 1 or 2 year contract before he is ready. Think of the Flames Defence in the Future...

Aulie-6'6
Pardy-6'4
Pelech-6'4
Sarich-6'4
Phaneuf-6'3
Regehr-6'3

Scary

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