Monday, October 18, 2010

FOUR SEA DOGS TO PLAY IN SUPER SERIES

It’s déjà vu all over again.

Just like when Saint John hosted the Subway Super Series (formally known as the ADT Canada-Russia Challenge) in 2008, four Sea Dogs will play for Team QMJHL when they take on a Russian junior team. Harbour Station plays host to game one of the challenge on Monday, November 8 at 7:00 pm. The second game goes November 10 in Drummondville before shifting to Ontario.

Defensemen Nathan Beaulieu and Simon Despres and forwards Zach Phillips and Jonathan Huberdeau will all suit up for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League squad featuring some of the best Canadian talent available for the Team Canada’s World Junior team.

Also representing Saint John will Sea Dogs head coach Gerard Gallant, who will serve as an assistant coach in game one according to News 88.9. Sea Dogs associate coach and director of hockey operations Mike Kelly also helped put the team together.

“I’m honoured to be able to coach the best players in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League for two games against a Russian squad which I believe will really put us to the test,” said Team QMJHL Head Coach André Tourigny in a release. Tourigny will serve as an assistant coach for Team Canada’s national junior team that will compete in Buffalo, New York this holiday season.

“They will be bringing a much stronger squad over this year and it should be a great show for our fans," he added. "Mike Kelly, Dominic Ricard and Pierre Leduc did an excellent job of putting the team together. The team will certainly be very strong on defence and in goal as well as have a ton of depth at the forward position.”

Several players will only compete in one of the two QMJHL hosted games, but according to the roster release, all four Sea Dogs will compete in both games.

Beaulieu, Phillips, and Huberdeau – all top prospects for the 2011 National Hockey League Entry Draft – will compete in their first Canada-Russia match. For Despres, a 2009 first round pick of the Pittsburgh Penguins, will play in his fourth Super Series game.

Seven players from the Montreal Juniors will be playing in at least one game, including Montreal Canadiens prospect Louis Leblanc. The series will also feature Moncton Wildcat defenseman Brandon Gormley and 2011 top prospect Sean Couturier.

Here is the full roster:

Goaltenders:
Jean-Francois Bérubé, Montreal Juniors*
Maxime Clermont, Gatineau Olympiques**
Olivier Roy, Acadie-Bathurst Titan

Defencemen:
Nathan Beaulieu, Saint John Sea Dogs
Nicolas Deslauriers, Gatineau Olympiques
Simon Després, Saint John Sea Dogs
Jérome Gauthier-Leduc, Rimouski Oceanic
Brandon Gormley, Moncton Wildcats
Ryan Kavanagh, Rimouski Oceanic*
Jean-Philippe Mathieu, Drummondville Voltigeurs**
Xavier Ouellet, Montreal Juniors
Charles-Olivier Roussel, Montreal Juniors

Forwards:
Guillaume Asselin, Chicoutimi Sagueneens
Louis-Marc Aubry, Montreal Juniors
Michael Bournival, Shawinigan Cataractes
Jonathan Brunelle, Drummondville Voltigeurs**
Sean Couturier, Drummondville Voltigeurs
Jonathan Huberdeau, Saint John Sea Dogs
Brandon Hynes, Victoriaville Tigres
Louis Leblanc, Montreal Juniors
Philippe Lefebvre, Montreal Juniors*
Jonathan Lessard, Acadie-Bathurst Titan
Philippe Paradis, PEI Rocket
Trevor Parkes, Montreal Juniors
Zack Phillips, Saint John Sea Dogs

*Will only compete in Saint John
**Will only compete in Drummondville
“Each of the three CHL member teams (QMJHL, OHL, WHL) are assembled by a selection committee that works closely with Hockey Canada Head Scout Kevin Prendergast to select CHL players that will compete in the series,” states a press release. “The QMJHL selection committee included Mike Kelly, Director of Hockey Operations and Associate Coach of the Saint John Sea Dogs, Drummondville Voltigeurs’ General Manager Dominc Ricard, along with Marcel Patenaude, the QMJHL Vice-President, Hockey, and Pierre Leduc, the QMJHL Director of Hockey Operations.”

Former Sea Dogs captain Alex Grant will serve as an honourary captain for the Saint John game. Grant, who played with Saint John from 2005-2009, is currently on the Pittsburgh Penguins injured reserve after suffering multiple injuries in the Toronto Maple Leafs Rookie Tournament last month in London, Ontario.

Saint John forward Stanislav Galiev is eligible to play for Team Russia. Their roster has yet to be announced.
Tickets are still available for he game at Harbour Station and it will also air on Rogers Sportsnet.

Photo Credits: Harbour Station, David Connell

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