The US World Junior team will play their second exhibition game this evening when they take on Germany in Kingston, Ontario. The US will play one more exhibition after this against Sweden on December 23rd, again in Kingston, before opening the tournament on December 26th against Finland in Montreal.
Tonight's game begins at 7:00pm EST and will be streamed online via Fasthockey.com($).
Here is the line-up for today's game from USA Hockey:
Jordan Schmaltz - Auston Matthews - John Hayden
Tyler Motte - Dylan Larkin - Hudson Fasching
Chase De Leo - JT Compher - Anthony Louis
Miles Wood - Cole Cassels - Jeremy Bracco
Scratched: Jack Eichel, Sonny Milano, Alex Tuch
Well, I guess that Eichel kid must have played well enough against BU to secure his spot on the team because he's scratched today. The US still needs to cut two forwards before the tournament. We speculated that Wood, Cassels, and Bracco are the three most likely on the bubble, and they are all on the fourth line today. They'll need to make a great impression to earn a spot on the team.
Will Butcher - Anthony DeAngelo
Noah Hanifn - Ian McCoshen
Werenski - Carlo
Downing - Collins
Scratched: Steve Santini
I guess it's no surprise that Santini is still out as he recovers from his wrist injury. They'll want to give him as much time as possible before the tournament, though it would be nice if he was able to see some game action before the tournament. Having him ready for the second week of the tournament is the key though, and they can use some of those pool play games to get him ready.
As for the cuts, two defensemen still need to go home. Anthony DeAngelo sticking with Will Butcher is likely a good sign for him making the team. Ian McCoshen jumps into the line-up playing with his D partner at Boston College Noah Hanifin, a pairing that will likely extend to the tournament.
Just with the way the line-up is written, it's likely a good sign for Brandon Carlo that he's paired with Zach Werenski, who sat out the BU exhibition and is likely to make the team. That leaves Downing and Collins as bubble players looking to impress in this final exhibition.
Thatcher Demko - Alex Nedeljkovic
Scratched: Brandon Halverson
Likely this is confirmation that Nedeljkovic is the back-up to Demko should the need arise.
The US opponent today is Germany. It's a bit interesting because these two teams are in the same pool in the actual tournament, but the Germans are heavy favorites to be relegated this year. They'll be without their top forward Leon Draisaitl, who wasn't released by the Edmonton Oilers, even though the Oilers made him a healthy scratch last night.
There are a lot of familiar faces on the German roster for American hockey fans though, including Western Michigan's Frederik Tiffels, Ohio State's Janik Moser, and Minnesota State recruits Parker Tuomie and Mark Michaelis, along with a handful of other USHL and NAHL players.