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Team USA World Juniors Team Announced

Team USA released their roster for the World Juniors today. You can find the roster here.

If you remember, I took my guess at who I thought would make the team last June.

My picks for goalie ended up being right, but then, it was no secret that Schneider was being groomed last year to be this year's starting goalie and that Frazee was considered the future of Team USA.

On defense, Jack Johnson and Brian Lee were two pretty obvious choices, and the only ones I got right. In fairness, Hagemo would be on the team if he were healthy. I'm a little surprised Matt Lashoff was left off the team. The only CHL players that were taken were the three absolute slam-dunks to make the team. Erik Johnson's stock has risen so much over the last couple months that it was probably right that he made the team. Matt Niskanen has also really impressed me. I'm glad he made the team. Chris Butler was not impressive the weekend I saw him play, but I'll chalk that up to a bad weekend, since it sounds like he's been playing better. I think Mark Mitera making the team is a surprise. He's a solid defensive defenseman, but I think Lashoff probably should have made it over him.

There weren't too many surprises at forward. Adam Pineault didn't make the team this year despite being on the team last year. Pineault probably shouldn't have made it last year though, so there wasn't much need to bring him back. I didn't pick Nathan Davis last summer, but he's been great this year, so I'm glad to see him on the roster. I thought Chad Kolarik was going to make the team, but he's struggled a little this season. I also thought Shawn Weller would make the team as a physical power foward, but the US coaching staff apparently thought Blake Wheeler could handle that role. Wheeler certainly brings more scoring touch than Weller.

Overall, I think this is a pretty good US team. A lot of people were waiting for this year. With so many top draft picks in the lineup, the US should be expecting their team to medal. The only question mark should be in goal. If Schneider performs well, the US should have a chance at winning the gold for the second time in three years.