By JD Lagrange – Team Canada has announced its selection camp roster and the Montreal Canadiens have three prospects invited. Owen Beck, Joshua Roy and Riley Kidney will try to earn a spot on the team to represent their country at the upcoming World Junior Championships later this month. But there is one name missing that raises some questions…
Logan Mailloux did something bad and he was charged, in Sweden, for defamation and offensive photography for which he paid the price issued by the Swedish Courts. Regretful, he tried to get out of the NHL Draft on his year of eligibility but the Montreal Canadiens, to no actions of Mailloux’ own doing, decided to ignore his request and drafted him 31st overall in the first round.
Then, Mailloux was suspended by the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) and his junior team, the London Knights, for further disciplinary actions in Canada. He then followed a program of rehabilitation and awareness, hand in hand with the Knights and the Canadiens, and was reinstated in January 2022.
He since has had a very clean record and he even spent the summer in Montreal to be monitored and rehabilitate his injured shoulders. Led by Geoff Molson (Owner, President and CEO), France Margaret Bélanger (President, Sports and Entertainment), the new management group consisting of Jeff Gorton (VP of Hockey Operations), Kent Hughes (General Manager), and Chantal Machabée (VP of Communications) deemed him worthy of getting a NHL contract.
Unless you lived under a rock, we have all heard about the scandal and cover-up job stemming from the 2018 events. In May, it was revealed Hockey Canada quietly settled a lawsuit after a woman said she was sexually assaulted by eight players, including members of the country’s world junior team, following a 2018 gala in London, Ontario.
This led to an outrage for a couple of reasons: one, the money used was taken from dues from minor hockey players from across the nation. But also, Hockey Canada tried to sweep it under the rug, hoping no one would find out. In this day in age, this is unacceptable. Hockey Canada eventually was forced to officially announce the resignation of CEO Scott Smith and entire board of directors amidst the allegations.
Hockey Canada is composed of 13 members:
- BC Hockey
- Hockey Alberta
- Hockey Manitoba
- Hockey Northwestern Ontario
- Ontario Hockey Federation
- Hockey Eastern Ontario
- Hockey Quebec
- Hockey New Brunswick
- Hockey P.E.I.
- Hockey Nova Scotia
- Hockey Newfoundland and Labrador
- Hockey North
- Hockey Saskatchewan
Hockey Canada is also associated with a number of premier associations, including the National Hockey League (NHL), the Canadian Hockey League (CHL), Canadian Armed Forces, Aboriginal Sport Circle, Canadian Deaf Ice Hockey Federation, Canadian Amputee Hockey Committee and more.
IIHF Wold Junior Championships
One would think that Logan Mailloux would need to be cleared to play by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) in order to be eligible to play in any IIHF sanctioned event. This would have to be initiated by Hockey Canada who would have to present the case. But does Hockey Canada have any interest in opening this can of worms after failing to protect their image in an attempt to cover up for the 2018 scandal?
So why wasn’t Mailloux named to Hockey Canada’s selection camp? Some were blue in the face trying to convince me that he wasn’t good enough to be there. Others say that it’s because he’s not good enough defensively. Some claim that he just hasn’t played enough in the past couple of years. Mostly though, those comments and arguments are coming from fans of other teams, for whom Mailloux will never do enough to redeem himself.
The kid was a first round pick in the NHL. In spite of missing so much time, Mailloux picked up where he left off, producing almost a point per game and having a positive differential. His shot is NHL caliber, and more. Tell me something, know-it-alls… if he’s not good, why did the Canadiens, under management that didn’t draft him (new management), decided to sign him to a NHL contract? They could have waited next summer… I’ll tell you why: it’s because he IS good enough. To think that he’s good enough for a NHL team to sign him but not good enough to make Team Canada rather hard to defend.
Habs prospects present
The Canadiens do have three prospects invited to Team Canada’s selection camp. Center Owen Beck has 30 points in 23 games for the OHL’s Mississauga Steelheads while QMJHL’s stars Joshua Roy (42 points in 25 games) and Sean Farrell (41 points in 27 games) will participate in that camp.
There is another forgotten Habs’ prospect that won’t be there but should have received consideration. Cedrick Guindon of the OHL’s Owen Sound Attacks has 35 points in 25 games so far this season. But you can’t have them all.
Here are a few other Habs’ prospects who could be at the WJC this year:
- 18 year old defenseman Lane Hutson has been invited to the USA’s selection team.
- Filip Mesar should be a shoe-in for team Slovakia and if the Canadiens decide to release him for the tournament, so is Juraj Slafkovsky. We should expect a decision from the Habs in the coming days about that.
- Oliver Kapanen should be representing Finland.
- Vinzenz Rohrer is pretty much a sure thing for Austria.
- Defenseman Adam Engstrom could also represent Sweden.
For Logan Mailloux to not even get a sniff raises questions, particularly considering his one past action and Hockey Canada’s botched coverup job and ensuing controversy. I’m just hoping that the true reasons for him not being there truly are hockey related. Further punishing the kid because of Hockey Canada’s scandal would not be fair. Canadians across the nation have kind of lost faith in them and they have a long ways to go to regain that trust. Mailloux has done and keeps doing his part.
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