“It’s fantastic,” Beyners said Thursday. “I think he talks a lot about how good college hockey is, not just one league [die NCAA]. There are three or four different leagues; You see players from every league coming to that team. There are a lot of great players out there, and team hockey is really good. I think it gets overlooked sometimes.”
Benners, No. 2 in the 2021 NHL Draft from the Seattle Kraken, has 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists) in 22 games as a sophomore at the University of Michigan. He is the seventh youngest player to be named to the United States Olympic team (19 years, 2 months, 8 days old).
“I am extremely proud and humbled and look forward to the experience of playing with the Olympic team,” said Beyneres. “It’s something every kid dreams of growing up as a hockey player. You watch the Miracle movie, you watch the Olympics every time you get a chance, and I’m so honored to be called up to this team. I’m excited and can’t wait to go with these teammates and coaches and I hope we get the medal golden”.
Sanderson, fifth in the Ottawa Senators’ Choice selection in the 2020 NH Draft competition, is the second-best defender’s selection in the NCAA Division I with 22 points (six goals, 16 assists) in 17 games as a freshman in the University of North Dakota. Youngest player called up for the US team (19 years, six months, five days).
“We have two great players in two different positions, and Sanderson brings a lot; it’s the most multi-skilled defense in college hockey,” coach David Quinn said. “We think he would do a lot for us. I know [Beniers] A little better…I tried to recruit him into BU before I left BU. It amazes me how much he improved at the time and he was already a great player at the time.”
“The great thing is that these players are experienced players who have some toughness and who like to play in the three regions and that is why they were drafted where they were drafted and that is why they became such an important part of the team as we have and that is why they have a great future in NHL”.
Other NHL forwards who made the list are forwards Brendan Brisson (No. 29, Vegas Golden Knights, 2020), Nick Abruzese (No. 124, Toronto Maple Leafs, 2019), Noah Cates (No. 137, Philadelphia Flyers, 2017), Shaun Farrell (No. 124, Montreal Canadiens, 2020), Sam Hentigs (No. 210, Minnesota Wild, 2018), Matthew Kneiss (No. 57, Maple Leafs, 2021), and Nathan Smith (No. 91, Winnipeg Jets), 2018); Defensemen Brock Faber (No. 45, Los Angeles Kings, 2020), Drew Helleson (No. 47, Colorado Avalanche, 2019) and Nick Berbex (No. 169, Tampa Bay Lightning, 2017); and goalkeeper Drew Commisso (No. 46, Chicago Blackhawks, 2020).
The NHL announced on December 22 that its players will not compete in the 2022 Olympics due to the disruption of regular season schedules due to the rise in COVID-19 cases and the increasing number of games postponed. As of Thursday, 104 matches have been postponed.
The remaining strikers selected from the United States are Kenny Agostino (Torpedo, Continental Hockey League), Mark McLaughlin (Boston College, NCAA), Ben Myers (Minnesota, NCAA), Andy Mealy (Torpedo, KHL), Brian O’Neal (Jokerit, KHL) and Nick Schur (Novosibirsk, KHL).
Brian Cooper (IK Oskarshamn, Swedish Hockey League), Stephen Kampfer (Ak Bars Kazan, KHL), Aaron Ness (Providence, NHL) and Warsowski were selected as defenders. The other two rangers are Strauss Mann (Skelleftea, SHL) and Pat Nagle (Lehigh Valley, AHL).
“We’re excited about this combination,” Quinn said. “I think we have a good mix of youth and experience, players who have already played in the Olympics. The challenge is to get 25 players together in a short time and try to form a cohesive unit in a small window of opportunity, but we guys look around and see the team and have a lot of confidence in the group that we have and we feel Really we picked the right team to go out there and win the gold.”
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