The round robin portion of the 2014 World Juniors has come to an end with all
six Hab prospects moving on to the medal round. All of Montreal’s
representatives have made a positive impact in the early goings of the
tournament; most figure to be important players down the stretch. Here is
a closer look at how each prospect has fared so far.
Sebastian Collberg (SWE)
The 3rd year winger was expected to be a key cog for the host Swedes.
Although he finds himself tied for 5th in team scoring, he hasn’t has as big of
an impact as I anticipated. Collberg has stood out at times, particularly
on the powerplay, and as always he is a threat to shoot wherever he is on the
ice. However, he hasn’t been among their go-to guys early on.
Playing on their top line, the expectations will be higher in these final few
Stats: 4 GP, 1 goal, 4 assists, 5 points, 2 PIMS, +4 rating, 10 shots
Jacob De la Rose (SWE)
He has been used primarily on a line with a pair of players who have been in
the NHL this year (Forsberg and Lindholm) and to his credit, he certainly hasn’t
looked out of place. De la Rose has also been a regular on both special
teams units while both of his goals have been game winners. As the
importance of the games grows, expect Team Sweden to lean on him even more.
If his play so far is any indication, De la Rose should rise to the challenge.
Stats: 4 GP, 2 goals, 3 assists, 5 points, 4 PIMS, +3 rating, 11
shots, 11/19 faceoffs
Zach Fucale (CAN)
The tournament didn’t get off to the best of starts for the Habs’ 2nd rounder
as he lost the starting job in the pre-tournament games. After Canada lost
to the Czechs, he got his chance to reclaim the crease and Fucale hasn’t looked
back. His first start against Slovakia had some highs and lows but he
looked much more comfortable against the US. The pressure will be on as it
will be on him to try to end Canada’s first place drought.
Stats: 2 GP, 2-0-0 record, 2.50 GAA, .896 SV%
Charles Hudon (CAN)
By all accounts, he narrowly made the team but he has seen action in every
game despite often being used as the 13th forward. He hasn’t looked out of
place on the ‘QMJHL’ line with Drouin and Mantha and when he has been on that
trio, he has had the trust of the coaches to play in late game situations.
Unfortunately, there haven’t been too many instances of this yet as he has only
taken a regular shift in one game. Now that teams are in must-win
situations, he may find himself playing even less moving forward.
Stats: 4 GP, 1 goal, 0 assists, 1 point, 0 PIMS, +5 rating, 6 shots
Artturi Lehkonen (FIN)
A lower body injury took him out of the last two games (even though the game
sheet shows he only missed one) but in the early going, Lehkonen has performed
as expected. Paired up with Chicago first rounder Teuvo Teravainen, that
line has been the Finns’ most dangerous so far. However, he has been the
least noticeable on his trio, something that should change presuming he’s back
to full health now.
Stats: 2 GP, 1 goal, 1 assist, 2 points, 2 PIMS, +2 rating, 8 shots
Martin Reway (SVK)
The diminutive fourth rounder has been a revelation so far. He has been
the key cog in what is surprisingly the most dangerous trio in the entire
tournament by a considerable margin. A good chunk of Slovakia’s offence
flows through him though I’d like to see Reway a little less exuberant in
calling for the puck so frequently. They will be in tough to move on past
the quarters but if the Slovaks are to have any chance of moving on, Reway will
have to be even better than he has been so far.
Stats: 4 GP, 4 goals, 6 assists, 10 points, 2 PIMS, +1 rating, 17