When Canada takes to the ice in Germany to capture their first Under-18 Championship since 2008, they’ll do it without Myles Bell.
Bell, who donned the Canadian jersey at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament last summer, suffered an injury in mid-March that has left him unable patrol Canada’s blueline in just over a week. The Pats defenseman, ranked in the first round for the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, didn’t suit up for Regina in the club’s final games of the season after injuring his leg in a March 11th game against the Moose Jaw Warriors.
It’s the same fate that fell Peterborough Petes forward Matt Peumpel.
Puempel, who recorded 34 goals and 69 points in 55 games, will sit out the tournament after having surgery to repair a chipped hip. While the injury wont affect the Essex, ON. native’s draft stock, it will keep him from continuing his season overseas. Puempel is currently the 14th ranked prospect for the draft.
Though not eligible for the draft until 2012, Edmonton Oil Kings defenseman Griffin Reinhart would have draped the Maple Leaf over his chest had he not broke his wrist earlier in the season. Though Reinhart was able to return to the Oil Kings lineup in time to be swept by the Red Deer Rebels in the first round, Reinhart didn’t have time to shake off the rust after a month and a half layoff.
Instead, both he and Michael St. Croix will watch teammate Travis Ewanyk from afar.
Despite scoring 27 goals and 75 points in 68 games this season, a relatively healthy St. Croix was left off the club. Despite being ranked 45th for the upcoming draft, St. Croix was deemed expendable by Hockey Canada.
The same fate fell Val D’or Fureurs forward Olivier Archambault. The Le Gardeur, QC. native didn’t make the cut despite a strong season that saw him find the back of the net 20 times.
Though of little consolation now, each Canadian absentee can set their sight on representing Canada at another under-18 event, the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament this summer.
Aaron Vickers is the managing editor of Future Considerations and can be found on Twitter. For all the latest Future Considerations news and posts, follow FC’s Official Twitter Feed, on YouTube and on Facebook!