KUNIN TO LEAD TEAM USA
In an afternoon team meeting, head coach Bob Motzko named forward Luke Kunin (Chesterfield, Mo./University of Wisconsin) captain of the 2017 U.S. National Junior Team. In addition, Motzko tabbed forward Colin White (Hanover, Mass./Boston College) and defenseman Charlie McAvoy (Long Beach, N.Y./Boston University), two returning bronze medalists from last year's squad, as alternate captains. To watch the moment, click here.
Two players hoping to represent the U.S. National Junior Team at this year's IIHF World Junior Championship are celebrating birthdays today as forward Alex DeBrincat (Farmington Hills, Mich,/Erie Otters) turns 19 and goaltender Jake Oettinger (Lakeville, Minn./Boston University) turns 18. DeBrincat earned a bronze medal with Team USA at last year's event in Helsinki, Finland, while Oettinger backstopped Team USA to a bronze medal finish at the 2015 IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
WINGS ON THE MENU
Given the birthday festivities tonight, it is expected that several players will have dinner at one of the local spots known for its buffalo wings. Last night, some players grabbed steaks nearby while others chose to stay in and order delivery. To pass the time, many have resorted to Xbox and a collection of movies, among them the D2: Mighty Ducks classic.
STARMAN, MEARS ON THE SCENE
Despite the weather delays yesterday, both Dave Starman and Steve Mears were on site to take in their first day of practice with the U.S. National Junior Team. The duo, which has been tabbed by NHL Network to provide in-game commentary alongside reporter Jill Savage for Team USA throughout the event, spent the afternoon getting to knows players and staff of Team USA.