16 WHL players got the phone call of a lifetime yesterday as they received invitations by Hockey Canada to attend their upcoming World Junior Selection Camp.
Warrior Quinton Howden was in Calgary yesterday for the unveiling of the invites. This is his second selection camp with the World Juniors and says it feels just a special as the first time. "Not many kids get the opportunity to go thru something like this and for me to get named to the selection camp again it's a real honour for me."
The Warriors 19 year old and Florida Panthers 2010 first round pick explains what World Junior head coach Don Hay told him when he called with the good news.
"He called and let me know that I got the invite to camp. I was there last year so he wants me to hopefully lead the way, help some of the younger guys, and try to contribute in a leadership way."
Howden is the only player from the WHL who played with Canada last year at the World Juniors, and is just one three returning players coming to camp.
Even though he has last year's experience under his belt, Howden says that doesn't guarantee him a spot on this year's roster. "Whether you were on the team last year or not, everybody has to go there and prove themselves and prove that they deserve a spot on that team."
"I'm hoping that I can prove that I deserve to be there again and contribute in any way again," added Howden.
The Oakbank, Manitoba product doesn't have to wait long to try and impress Canada Head Coach Don Hay, Howden and the Warriors battle Hay's Vancouver Giants tonight at Mosaic Place
"It's going to be a bit weird, but it's going to be an exciting game. I'll have to definitely step up and prove myself that I can play and deserve a spot, hopefully I can prove myself to Don tonight."
The other two returning players from last year's silver medal team is Wilcox's Jaden Schwartz and OHL goalie Mark Visentin.
The selection camp is December 10-14 in Calgary, Canada opens the tournament Boxing Day. Golden West Radio is proud to announce that once again Country 100 will be the home of the World Juniors in Southern Saskatchewan, they'll carry all of Canada's games in their journey back to the gold medal.