Trail Smoke Eaters alumnus Kent Johnson has been named as a reserve forward for Canada’s men’s Olympic hockey team that will compete in Beijing next month. (Black Press - file photo)

Trail Smoke Eaters alumnus Kent Johnson has been named as a reserve forward for Canada’s men’s Olympic hockey team that will compete in Beijing next month. (Black Press - file photo)

BC Hockey League alumni part of Canada’s Olympic men’s hockey roster

Trio of former league players to wear maple leaf at Beijing Winter Games

Four B.C. Hockey League alumni and two from the South Okanagan are among the 31 players named to Canada’s men’s Olympic hockey roster.

The BCHL alum include former Vernon Viper Adam Tambellini (now playing in Sweden); Ben Street of the Salmon Arm Silverbacks (Germany); and ex-Powell River Kings forward Daniel Carr (Switzerland).

They, along with Corban Knight (born in Oliver, playing in Russia in the KHL), are among the 25 players named to the team.

Six players were named as reserves including former Trail Smoke Eater Kent Johnson (University of Michigan) and goalie Justin Pogge (playing in Germany) of Penticton.

“We are proud to unveil the 25 players that have been nominated to represent Team Canada in Beijing. We know these athletes will represent our country with a tremendous amount of pride as they compete for an Olympic gold medal,” said Tom Renney, chief executive officer of Hockey Canada and former head coach of Vernon Lakers’ Kootenay International Junior Hockey League affiliate, the Columbia Valley Rockies.

The 25 athletes were selected by general manager Shane Doan (Halkirk, Alta./Arizona, NHL), assistant general manager and senior vice-president of hockey operations, former Lakers forward Scott Salmond, and director of player personnel Blair Mackasey (Montréal, Que.). Head coach Claude Julien (Orleans, Ont.) and assistant coaches Nolan Baumgartner (Calgary, Alta.), Jeremy Colliton (Blackie, Alta.) and Tyler Dietrich (West Vancouver, B.C.), as well as Renney and Scott Smith (Bathurst, N.B.), president and chief operating officer of Hockey Canada, also provided input.

NOMINATED PLAYERS

Goaltenders: Devon Levi (Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Que./Northeastern University, HE), Edward Pasquale (Toronto/Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, KHL) and Matt Tomkins (Sherwood Park, Alta./Frölunda HC, SHL)

Defence: Mark Barberio (Montréal/Ak Bars Kazan, KHL), Jason Demers (Dorval, Que./Ak Bars Kazan, KHL), Brandon Gormley (Murray River, P.E.I./Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, KHL), Alex Grant (Antigonish, N.S./Jokerit Helsinki, KHL), Maxim Noreau (Montréal/ZSC Lions, NL), Owen Power (Mississauga, Ont./University of Michigan, Big Ten), Mat Robinson (Calgary/SKA St. Petersburg, KHL) and Tyler Wotherspoon (Burnaby, B.C./Utica, AHL)

Forwards: Daniel Carr (Leduc, Alta./HC Lugano, NL), Adam Cracknell (Prince Albert, Sask./Bakersfield, AHL), David Desharnais (Laurier-Station, Que./HC Fribourg-Gottéron, NL), Landon Ferraro (Vancouver/Kölner Haie, DEL), Josh Ho-Sang (Thornhill, Ont./Toronto, AHL), Corban Knight (Oliver, B.C./Avangard Omsk, KHL), Jack McBain (Toronto/Boston College, HE), Mason McTavish (Carp, Ont./Hamilton, OHL), Eric O’Dell (Ottawa/Dynamo Moscow, KHL), Eric Staal (Thunder Bay, Ont./Iowa, AHL), Ben Street (Coquitlam, B.C./EHC Red Bull München, DEL), Adam Tambellini (Edmonton, Alta./Rögle BK, SHL), Jordan Weal (North Vancouver, B.C./Ak Bars Kazan, KHL) and Daniel Winnik (Toronto/Genève-Servette HC, NL)

RESERVES

Goaltender Justin Pogge (Penticton, B.C./Kölner Haie, DEL); defencemen Morgan Ellis (Ellerslie, P.E.I./Eisbären Berlin, DEL) and John Gilmour (Montréal/CSKA Moscow, KHL); and forwards Chris DiDomenico (Woodbridge, Ont./HC Fribourg-Gottéron, NL), Kent Johnson (Port Moody, B.C./University of Michigan, Big Ten) and Max Véronneau (Ottawa/Leksands IF, SHL).

Canada’s Men’s Olympic Team also features three players (Noreau, O’Dell, Robinson) who won a bronze medal at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, and one player (Staal) who won a gold medal on Canadian ice at Vancouver 2010.

In Beijing, the men’s hockey tournament will take place Feb. 9-20 at the National Indoor Stadium and Wukesong Sports Centre. Canada will aim for its 10th men’s hockey gold medal and first since 2014 when it opens preliminary-round action against Germany on Feb. 10.

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