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Four Canes prospects set for World Juniors

Four Carolina Hurricanes prospects are getting ready to get underway at World Juniors.

Grizzlys Wolfsburg v Krefeld Pinguine - Penny DEL Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images

The rescheduled World Junior Championships get underway Tuesday in Edmonton, as some new-look rosters will take the ice after December’s edition of the WJCs was shut down after just a couple of days due to COVID.

With the change in the calendar (and the absence of Russia this time around), rosters look quite different than they did back in December. In terms of NHL team’s prospects participating, no team had a bigger change than the Carolina Hurricanes.

Back in December, the Canes set an NHL record with 10 prospects participating in the tournament. Now with three Russians and three other notable prospects not in the tournament this time around, the Hurricanes number has dwindled to four.

Here are the four Canes’ prospects on WJC rosters:

Nikita Quapp, Goaltender, Germany

Quapp actually got a game in during December’s tournament, starting in net for Germany in a loss to Finland. Fellow Canes’ prospect Aleksi Heimosalmi had a good day in that game against Quapp, recording an assist in the game.

Now Quapp and his German teammates will get the rescheduled event started off Tuesday night against the United States.

Germany Schedule: 8/9 vs. United States (10 p.m.), 8/10 vs. Austria (10 p.m.), 8/13 vs. Switzlerland (10 p.m.), 8/15 vs. Sweden (10 p.m.)

Ronan Seeley, Defenseman, Canada

The lone North American representative for the Canes this time around (Scott Morrow played for the USA in December), Seeley will look to show off his speed and his skill again in the coming weeks for Canada.

Seeley appeared in Canada’s first game against Czechia in December, a game that our Matt Somma said was smooth sailing for him following an early error on a pinch that let Czechia score.

Canada Schedule: 8/10 vs. Latvia (6 p.m.), 8/11 vs. Slovakia (6 p.m.), 8/13 vs. Czechia (6 p.m.), 8/15 vs. Finland (6 p.m.)

Aleksi Heimosalmi, Defenseman, Finland

One of two Finnish prospects from the Canes playing, Heimosalmi had a great start to the tournament in December before things got shut down. He had an assist in Finland’s win over Germany, distributing the helper on the game-winning goal for Finland.

Finland Schedule: 8/9 vs. Latvia (6 p.m.), 8/11 vs. Czechia (2 p.m.), 8/14 vs. Slovakia (2 p.m.), 8/15 vs. Canada (6 p.m.)

Ville Koivunen, Forward, Finland

The only forward prospect from the Canes this time around, Koivunen also had an assist in Finland’s win over Germany in December. Matt said back then that Koivunen could have easily had two or three assists in that game if not for Quapp’s play, so it’ll be fun to see him at it again.

Finland Schedule: 8/9 vs. Latvia (6 p.m.), 8/11 vs. Czechia (2 p.m.), 8/14 vs. Slovakia (2 p.m.), 8/15 vs. Canada (6 p.m.)

Following pool play, the quarterfinals will take place on Aug. 17. The semifinals will follow on Aug. 19, with the title game and third-place game on Aug. 20.

As for Canes watching, the biggest game to circle is Finland’s Aug. 15 game with Canada, which will feature three of the four Carolina prospects participating. Quapp will face none of his Canes’ counterparts in pool play this time around.