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Photo Credit: The Hockey News

Michael DiPietro invited to Team Canada for the World Championships

In a bit of unexpected news today, Team Canada has invited 18-year-old Canucks prospect Michael DiPietro to the World Championship in Denmark

At the time of that tweet, it was just a report but DiPietro was on Sportsnet 650 shortly after and confirmed that he did receive an invite.

This is a fantastic opportunity for the Canucks prospect as it allows him to travel with the team and practice with NHL’rs for a few weeks even if it’s just as a 3rd goaltender. The idea of inviting a young goaltender to experience the World Championships has been something that the USA has been doing for a few years and it appears that Team Canada management also sees the benefit. Fellow Canucks prospect Thatcher Demko had filled the same 3rd goalie role for Team USA in 2016. It’s really encouraging to see the 3rd goalie slot being put to use rather than having a professional come over and sit in the pressbox. As mentioned before, there are quite a few benefits to having a player like DiPietro there to soak in everything he can.

DiPietro was the last goaltending cut for Canada for the World Juniors and is expected to be the starter for Canada at the 2019 World Juniors here in Vancouver/Victoria. It was unfortunate that DiPietro didn’t make the team but Carter Hart and Colton Point played well throughout the evaluation process and in the tournament. It will be interesting to see how DiPietro does as the expected starter for Canada over the course of the season.

The 2017 3rd round pick had a very good season considering that the Windsor Spitfires purged their roster after their Memorial Cup championship. DiPietro was left to hold down the fort as the organization went through a transition period to load up again. Despite that turnover, DiPietro was near the league leaders in all goaltending categories including leading the OHL with 7 shutouts. Despite losing in six games to Sarnia, DiPietro finished the series with a sparkly 0.934 SV%.

It’s fair to believe that DiPietro won’t suit up for any games for Canada at the upcoming World Championships, but being invited is a very good indication of what Hockey Canada thinks of DiPietro’s future. It’s a fantastic opportunity for him to get more prepared for the World Juniors.

At this moment, the Canucks will be represented by Michael DiPietro and Bo Horvat with Team Canada while Anders Nilsson and Elias Pettersson will represent Sweden.

Rick Dhaliwal did mention later that Thatcher Demko is a possibility as the USA 3rd goaltender but will obviously depend on what happens with Utica this week.

  • apr

    I really think the US was really smart in adopting this approach. I recall Demko and Hellybuck getting this opportunity. If its just for the third goalie; why not – better than sending an NHL goalie with a super ego tp sit in the press box. Now, hopefully there is a short term injury (nice case of the flu) to the starter and backup so Dipietro can get some games in.

  • Nice to have Benning draft and develop quality goaltenders instead of trying to find one via trade or FA. He’s invested a 2nd and a 3rd in some blue-chip prospects. With a few exceptions, it was rare to see the Canucks draft a goaltender and when they did, it was usually in the 6th or 7th round.

      • This is an area where analytics has made a pretty big impact – lots of data showing the unpredictability of goalie development and placement of impact goalies in the draft being totally random, so most teams stopped taking goalies in the first two rounds.

    • tyhee

      This got me curious, so I looked up all goalies drafted by the Canucks and have listed year and round selected in, name and # NHL games played so far. As you’ll see it’s not an exciting list.

      2017-3rd Michael DiPietro (0)
      2014-2nd Thatcher Demko (1)
      2011-3rd David Honzik (0)
      2010-6th Jonathan Iilahti (0)
      2009-6th Joe Cannata (0)
      2008-7th Morgan Clark (0)
      2005-4th Alexandre Vincent (0)
      2004-1st Cory Schneider (370)
      2004-5th Julien Ellis (0)
      2002-3rd Lukas Mensator (0)
      2002-5th Rob McVicar (0)
      2002-8th Matt Violin (0)
      1997-5th Matt Cockell (0)
      1997-9th Peter Brady (0)
      1996-6th Nolan McDonald (0)
      1995-9th Jason Cugnet (0)
      1993-4th Dieter Kochan (0)
      1993-11th Sergei Tkachenko (0)
      1992-2nd Mike Fountain (11)
      1992-9th Sonny Mignacca (0)
      1991-11th Jason Fitzsimmons (0)
      1989-10th Gus Morschauser (0)
      1988-6th Cory D’Alessio (1)
      1987-7th Todd Fanning (0)
      1987-10th John Fletcher (0)
      1986-9th Matt Marten (0)
      1985-2nd Troy Gamble (72)
      1984-9th Rex Grant (0)
      1982-4th Shawn Kilroy (0)
      1981-4th Wendell Young (187)
      1981-9th Frank Caprice (102)
      1980-5th Darrell May (5)
      1979-3rd Ken Ellacott (12)
      1978-10th Rick Martens (0)
      1977-3rd Glen Hanlon (477)
      1977-4th Murray Bannerman (289)
      1975-3rd Normand Lapointe (0, played 77 games in WHA)
      1973-7th Clay Hebenton (0)
      1970-3rd Ed Dyck (49)
      1988 supp-2nd Steve McKichan (0)

      Goalies selected by the Canucks in the the NHL draft and # of NHL games played (so far):

      2017-3rd Michael DiPietro (0)
      2014-2nd Thatcher Demko (1)
      2011-3rd David Honzik (0)
      2010-6th Jonathan Iilahti (0)
      2009-6th Joe Cannata (0)
      2008-7th Morgan Clark (0)
      2005-4th Alexandre Vincent (0)
      2004-1st Cory Schneider (370)
      2004-5th Julien Ellis (0)
      2002-3rd Lukas Mensator (0)
      2002-5th Rob McVicar (0)
      2002-8th Matt Violin (0)
      1997-5th Matt Cockell (0)
      1997-9th Peter Brady (0)
      1996-6th Nolan McDonald (0)
      1995-9th Jason Cugnet (0)
      1993-4th Dieter Kochan (0)
      1993-11th Sergei Tkachenko (0)
      1992-2nd Mike Fountain (11)
      1992-9th Sonny Mignacca (0)
      1991-11th Jason Fitzsimmons (0)
      1989-10th Gus Morschauser (0)
      1988-6th Cory D’Alessio (1)
      1987-7th Todd Fanning (0)
      1987-10th John Fletcher (0)
      1986-9th Matt Marten (0)
      1985-2nd Troy Gamble (72)
      1984-9th Rex Grant (0)
      1982-4th Shawn Kilroy (0)
      1981-4th Wendell Young (187)
      1981-9th Frank Caprice (102)
      1980-5th Darrell May (5)
      1979-3rd Ken Ellacott (12)
      1978-10th Rick Martens (0)
      1977-3rd Glen Hanlon (477)
      1977-4th Murray Bannerman (289)
      1975-3rd Normand Lapointe (0, but played 77 games in WHA)
      1973-7th Clay Hebenton (0)
      1970-3rd Ed Dyck (49)
      1988 supp-2nd Steve McKichan (0)

  • 51Geezer

    Good work, Tyhee.
    I remember the hype about Ken Ellacott. He played twelve games and shortly thereafter finished his career with the “Flamboro Mott’s Clamato’s”. Look who was picked next!