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Canada juggles lines at World Junior camp

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The Canadian Press
12/14/2009 5:46:00 PM
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REGINA - Chemistry was the key word Monday as coaches juggled the lines on the second day of the selection camp for Canada's world junior championship team.

Physical winger Greg Nemisz was moved onto a trio with his Windsor Spitfires teammates Adam Henrique and Taylor Hall, while an all-Quebec line was formed of Patrice Cormier, Jordan Caron and Philippe Cornet.

Battling winger Stefan Della Rovere was moved onto a line with gifted youngster Tyler Seguin and stocky right-winger Brandon Kozun, while Brandon McMillan joined the duo of Jordan Eberle and Nazem Kadri. Other lines had centre Luke Adam with John McFarland and Louis Leblanc and Brayden Schenn with Gabriel Bourque and Scott Glennie. Cody Eakin is slotted in.

"We moved the lines around a bit to get guys who are familiar with each other together," said head scout Al Murray. "The biggest thing is to put players with others who can make them more successful so the coaches can see them in their best light.

"There's a lot still evolving. Try not to read too much into these combinations, but we are working on chemistry things."

One problem team bosses found in the first intrasquad game in camp on Sunday night was that the defensive players were ahead of the offensive stars, so they are looking for ways to let the skilled players shine a little more.

Murray said that was normal at national team camps. He also praised the players for their commitment to backchecking and blocking the shooting lanes, which are details they'll need to heed at the world juniors Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Regina and Saskatoon.

"If you're patient, the offence starts to come," Murray said. "The guys find a little more room, they get more comfortable with their linemates and the offence comes along. We have some highly skilled players out there."

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CARON COMFORTABLE -- Caron was only too happy to line up with his Rimouski Oceanic teammate Cormier and Rouyn-Noranda Huskie Cornet. The three have played together in past all-star games and age group tournaments.

"It's great for us because we know where we are on the ice," he said. "We have good communication and that gives us a better chance."

Caron has made an impressive comeback from the team's camp in the summer, when he was knocked out cold by an open-ice hit from defenceman Colten Teubert. He had a goal and an assist in the intrasquad game.

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SPORT OF KINGS -- It may seem that the Los Angeles Kings already have enough good young players, but there are another five of them at the Canadian camp.

Schenn was picked fifth overall by L.A. in June, when they also selected defenceman Nicolas Deslauriers in the third round and Kozun in the sixth. Teubert was their 2008 first rounder, while goaltender Martin Jones signed with the Kings as an undrafted free agent.

Another team well represented is the Edmonton Oilers with three players. They picked Eberle in the first round and Cornet in the fifth in 2008 and added goaltender Olivier Roy in the fifth round this year.

Tyler Seguin (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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