Some international news

The World Junior Hockey Championships are right around the corner, and there’s been news that relates to the Silvertips.

First off, it was quite the surprise when Tips winger Nikita Scherbak was left off Russia’s preliminary roster, meaning he won’t be making the trip to Sweden at the end of the month. It’s unusual for a first-round NHL draft pick who’s in his 19-year-old season not to make a World Juniors roster, and it’s not like Scherbak hasn’t been producing for Everett.

Well, Russian coach Valeri Bragin provided some insight to reporter Roman Solovyov, translated by Sunaya Sapurji, on why Scherbak was left off:

So that’s that. I doubt the Tips are complaining much as it means their top offensive player won’t be missing any games around the holidays because of international duty.

The other news concerns the U.S. as it released its preliminary roster earlier this week. The notable name from an Everett perspective is Auston Matthews, as he’s been included.

Matthews, a third-round pick in the 2012 bantam draft by Everett, is the youngest player invited, having just turned 17. Despite that, he’s considered a lock to make the team. Indeed, he’s now pretty much universally regarded as the top overall prospect for the 2016 NHL draft.

Matthews, who is playing his final season with the U.S. National Team Development Program, continues to say he’s 50-50 on whether to come to Everett next season or head to the NCAA. Reports have said that Matthews would need to accelerate his schooling to be eligible for college next season.

So while Everett won’t be directly involved in World Juniors this year, there’s still a reason to pay attention.

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