After spending one year in Victoria, British Columbia, the World Junior Summer Showcase returned to Plymouth, Michigan. Four teams competed for the chance to win gold at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship in the Czech Republic. Over the course of the last week, the four teams played 12 games. The United States fielded a split squad and Canada brought the extra bodies needed for each game.
The first World Junior Summer Showcase of the 2019 season began last weekend in Finland. While the U.S. team, which was split into two teams, won both games, USA White finished with a 2-2 record and lost to Sweden in overtime. In total, 13 players were cut from the team and only three were able to compete in the competition.
John Beecher generated plenty of excitement with his performance in the Summer Hockey Showcase. The right physical attributes of this offensive forward make him a sure-fire NHL player. His speed and size make him capable of driving to the net, but his lack of instincts and pure offensive skills are a detriment.
Sweden had a tough first day but came back to win gold after defeating Russia in overtime. Varvara Boriskova and Malou Berggren scored goals for the Swedes. The Czech Republic, meanwhile, got a 2-0 win thanks to a late goal from Linnea Johansson. A total of 29 saves was recorded by Ebba Svensson Traff.
BRUINS HAVE A GEM IN BEECHER
Dom Beecher is a complementary piece of the Bruins’ puzzle, a perfect supporting player. While Bobby Brink might have been a better choice at 30th overall, there is a lot of value in Beecher as a forward. In Vancouver, Ben Gislason caught up with Beecher to learn more about his game. The three Amigos were reunited in Vancouver.
Although he’s a first-round pick, Beecher is a solid three-line center with the potential to play at a higher level. While he’ll probably follow Trent Frederic’s blueprint and start his professional career in the AHL, the Bruins have a real gem on their hands. He’s mobile, heavy on the puck, and could potentially provide an offensive dimension the Bruins haven’t discovered yet.
The Boston Bruins’ first-round pick in 2019 will likely be a center, and they’re hoping to get their hands on him before the trade deadline. He’ll report to Providence and play the rest of the season for the Bruins’ AHL affiliate. Beecher is still just a sophomore, and has a few more seasons left to develop before he can get his NHL debut.
THOUGHTS TO TAKE AWAY
In late July, the World Junior Summer Showcase concluded in Helsinki. The event featured two Boston Bruins prospects – John Beecher and Curtis Hall – but it was Beecher who stood out. The 19-year-old outplayed Hall, Team USA, and most other players in the tournament. Here are some things to take away from Beecher’s performance.
Johnny Beecher is an intriguing prospect. While he may not have had the talent to start the tournament as the team’s starting goaltender, the Michigan native is considered a blue chip prize. Last season, Beecher’s presence on the USNTDP squad was overshadowed by other players. The top two centers, Jack Hughes and Alex Turcotte, were drafted in the top five of the NHL Draft. But Beecher was selected by the Boston Bruins in the first round. Beecher scored 43 points in 63 games, but was unable to get the first power-play minutes.
As a teenager, Beecher’s performances at the World Junior Summer Showcase have the potential to impact his future. Despite playing for two teams, he managed to score on both sides. Team USAB’s lineup, which included eight players from the national league, topped the podium by a large margin. Beecher’s goal was a perfect example of his excellent skating.
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