The Red Deer Rebels are done for the season, but that doesn’t mean draft eligible prospect Mathew Dumba is.
Dumba, whose season started out captaining Canada’s gold medal entry at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial, will likely have the opportunity to accomplish the same feat at the World Under-18 Championship in April – a silver lining to his Rebels failing to make the Western Hockey League playoffs.
“It gives me the opportunity to play for my country but as of right now I still don’t know about that,” Dumba said. “Nothing has really come out. It’s not set in stone. Stranger things have happened, but to get that opportunity would be amazing. In the summer playing for U18’s was the time of my life so I’d be thrilled if that was to happen.”
It’s hard to imagine Dumba, seen as one of the top defensemen available in 2012’s NHL Entry Draft, left off the team. His resume with Hockey Canada is impeccable for a 17-year-old, while Red Deer bench boss Jesse Wallin will coach the squad.
Meaning Dumba, who almost made Canada’s entry into the World Junior Championship in December, will pull on the maple leaf one more time.
It never gets old for the six-foot, 175-pound defenseman who couldn’t find the words to explain the feeling of pulling on Canada’s jersey.
“You can’t even describe it,” Dumba said. “It’s just a rush of emotions. You’ve seen it all your life, since you were little. You just admired those guys who have done it in the past and once you’re able to do it it’s a pretty amazing feeling. When you do it, it’s pretty special.”