Being drafted is the easy part. Now the work starts. For the latest Leafs prospect and draft pick, Rasmus Sandin, he’ll be busy almost immediately.
First on the agenda is the Leafs development camp which begins on Monday, June 25. In an interview with Nikolai Chebykin, who is also set to attend, it was revealed that there is not going to be a scrimmage game this year.
We do know that the camp will be run by Scott Pellerin, the Leafs Director of Player Development and that Marlies coach Sheldon Keefe and Growlers coach Ryane Crowe will be on hand for that event. We don’t yet have the full roster, and we should assume that will be released as soon as the Leafs know which draft picks and invitees are available.
Last summer, Liljegren spent a lot of time in Toronto, playing in the second camp for the prospects prior to training camp and participating in the rookie tournament. Before those events in September, however, the World Junior Summer Showcase (WJSS) takes centre stage.
Held for many years in Michigan, and hosted by USA Hockey, the WJSS is an event designed to help coaching staffs make their WJC rosters for next December. The usual structure is for the USA to split their junior prospects into two groups and play Sweden and Finland for a few days before the Canadians show up, then Canada and USA cuts their teams to one group, and the round-robin play decides “the winner”. This is a tournament where the participation is much more the point than the points.
This year, the event is in Kamloops, BC, and the scheduled games begin on July 28. We should see a similar format and the same countries are attending.
Sweden has already released their roster, and Rasmus Sandin is one of the defenders chosen. After this event, Sweden is participating in a four-nations event in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden in late August. This may well conflict with training in Canada, so Sandin may not attend.
The final games of the WJSS are likely to be televised, as they were last year on TSN. If you’re in Kamloops, and want to attend, the full 11-game ticket package is $99.
When we have the final schedule, we’ll update you.