Hockey Canada announced a roster of 113 players invited to its virtual national under-17 development camp as well as the coaching staffs that will lead Canada’s national men’s under-17 teams at the 2020 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, presented by TELUS on Wednesday.
Rockets head coach Kris Mallette was named an assistant coach for Team Canada Red.
Kelly Buchberger (Langenburg, Sask./Tri-City, WHL) will head Team Canada White, with Stéphane Julien (Shawinigan, Que./Sherbrooke, QMJHL) leading Team Canada Black and Chris Lazary (Toronto/Saginaw, OHL) serving as head coach of Team Canada Red.
Joining Buchberger’s staff will be assistant coaches Maxime Desruisseaux (Victoriaville, Que./Victoriaville, QMJHL) and Chad Wiseman (Burlington, Ont./Guelph, OHL), while Josh Hepditch (Fredericton, N.B./Moncton, QMJHL) and Ryan Kuwabara (Hamilton, Ont./Flint, OHL) will work with Julien, and Brad Yetman (Mount Pearl, N.L./Rouyn-Noranda, QMJHL) will join Mallette in assisting Lazary.
Mallette was named head coach of the Kelowna Rockets (WHL) in March 2020, having joined the Rockets as an assistant coach ahead of the 2014-15 season. His coaching career also included stops with the Vernon Vipers (BCHL) and the North Okanagan Knights (KIJHL). Mallette was drafted 62nd overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft.
Lazary was promoted to head coach of the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in November 2018 after more than two seasons (2016-18) as an associate coach with Saginaw and two seasons (2014-16) as an assistant coach with the Sarnia Sting (OHL). Prior to his Canadian Hockey League (CHL) coaching career, he spent two seasons (2010-12) as an assistant coach with the St. Michael’s Buzzers of the Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL) and one season (2012-13) as an assistant with York University.
Yetman is entering his second season as an assistant coach with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies (QMJHL) after two seasons (2017-19) as head coach of the East Coast Blizzard of the Newfoundland and Labrador Major Midget League (NLMMHL). He returns to the under-17 program after serving as a guest coach at U17 camp in 2019. As a player, he represented Team Atlantic at the 2008 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
12 goaltenders, 37 defencemen and 64 forwards will be split into six teams for the week-long virtual camp from July 19-25, participating in a variety of sessions with a focus on player development through online education.
The 2020 edition of the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge will be presented by TELUS, Hockey Canada’s official telecommunications partner and title sponsor of the TELUS Cup, Canada’s National U18 Club Championship. Through its signature community hockey program, “The Code”, TELUS provides meaningful tools, information and inspiration to players, families, coaches and fans to end bullying and encourage positive behaviour online and on the ice.
View the full press release from Hockey Canada here.